The president of the Mexican Federation of Athletic Associations (FMAA) has been arrested for embezzling close to 5 million pesos (US $240,000).
The National Sports Commission (Conade) filed charges with the federal Attorney General against Antonio Lozano Pineda, who was detained on Monday at the Mexico City airport.
Conade had already suspended funding for the association under Lozano’s charge after he failed to justify the spending of his allocated budget.
Further investigations by the Sports Commission revealed irregularities in the association’s handling of public funds.
Lozano will be held under preventive imprisonment until he is able to guarantee to make financial reparation for the damage he caused and pays back the 4.8 million pesos.
A former marathon runner, Lozano has led the FMAA for over eight years, during which time the former Mexican Athletics Federation was restructured and renamed.
That move earned him the criticism of the association’s affiliates, which had to pay down the debts of the dissolved federation.
Lozano’s ascent to the leadership was also marked by years-long conflicts with other candidates for the position.
There has also been conflict between Conade and several sports organizations since Alfredo Castillo was appointed director in April 2015.
He accused several of the organizations’ officials of embezzlement, including Lozano, and the controversy threatened to prevent athletes from representing Mexico in the 2016 Summer Olympics.
After that issue was resolved the Rio Olympics was the venue for another confrontation, this one between Castillo and the head of the Mexican Boxing Federation, Ricardo Contreras.
With that history in mind the newspaper Milenio hinted that Contreras could be next on Conade’s list.
Source: Milenio (sp)