César Duarte, former governor of Chihuahua (Archive/Special)
The General Council of the National Electoral Institute (INE) sanctioned the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) with 97 million 916 thousand pesos for having benefited from the diversion of public resources during the government of César Duarte in the state of Chihuahua.
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After five years of investigations, the Council analyzed the project for the last time and approved it with 9 votes in favor and two against.
On June 4, 2018, the Secretary of the Public Service of the state of Chihuahua, Rocío Olmos Loya, informed the electoral authorities of some irregularities committed by the tricolor party during the 2015 campaigns.
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In that year, the local Treasury Department allocated 39.1 million pesos in cash, which it delivered through the party’s then finance secretary, Pedro Mauli Romero, with which they benefited from a resource triangulation scheme.
INE General Meeting (Central INE)
Before the votes, the representatives of the PRI, Hiram Hernández and Marco Mendoza, indicated the matter should be returned so that the Chihuahua commission could consider in the investigation that the former finance secretary was tortured after receiving the money so that he would plead guilty to various crimes.
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“It is unquestionable that the regulated entity displayed malicious conduct by avoiding rejecting contributions from a prohibited entity, such as the Ministry of Finance of the Government of the State of Chihuahua, knowing that said conduct was illegal, with the intention of pretending a situation that is not real”, indicated the Commission.
However, after a long debate, most of the councilors agreed that the return was not necessary, since they have the pertinent evidence indicating that the PRI member signed the receipts for money from the state government in 2015 and was tortured for years. after.
The document reports that in 2015 the PRI illegally received 39 million 166 thousand 666 pesos, through 13 checks that the Treasury of the Government of Chihuahua gave it. The checks were cashed by a securities company that went to the state treasury and delivered directly to treasurer Joaquín Francisco Hernández Vega, who in turn delivered it to Mauli Romero to sign the receipts.
César Duarte, former president of Chihuahua (Photo: REUTERS/Jose Luis Gonzalez)
The PRI representatives claimed that there was no evidence to prove that such an economic sum benefited the party. In addition to that, “in any case, his (Mauli Romero’s) acts were carried out in a personal capacity.”
“It is not certain that he would have received amounts of money from the local administration, since the electoral authority could not claim the original receipts that it allegedly received, so it could not order an expert opinion on graphoscopy to compare the signatures,” defended Hernandez Vega.
The advisor president of the Oversight Commission, Jaime Rivera, indicated that there is documentation from the National Banking and Securities Commission that leaves no room for doubt, since it is based on account statements from the local Treasury Secretary, treasurer statements, analysis graphoscopy, as well as other officials who show the method they used “to make it liquid and deliver it to the PRI.”
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Added to this, it responded that the PRI did not even participate in the requested hearings or present its arguments within the investigation process.
In response, the PRI members pointed out that the approval of the sanction creates a serious precedent in the INE because the evidence they present is linked to torture and it is something that the other ministries replicated.
“I don’t see how one thing has anything to do with the other. The receipts were signed in 2015, the other man began to be a prosecutor until 2016 and therefore, the case of torture cannot be proven to justify that the party is not responsible because it is proven that the man received, and it is not just any person He is the party’s Finance Secretary,” accused counselor Carla Humphrey.
The councilors voted that after five years of investigations the case was closed, considering that there was sufficient evidence to show that the PRI received at least 13 Treasury checks from the Government of Chihuahua that it destined to pay salaries of party representatives or support for athletes. in the 2015 campaigns.