Veracruz Governor Javier Duarte’s father-in-law is under federal investigation for alleged acts of corruption that involve at least one former top-level state secretary.
Antonio Macías Yazegey, director of the sprawling technological and industrial park of Puerto México in the port city of Coatzacoalcos, is suspected of diverting millions of pesos in public funds to the benefit of friends engaged in agribusinesses or to projects unrelated to their original purpose.
Also implicated is former state agricultural secretary Manuel Martínez de Leo.
Mártinez was the subject of complaints during his stint in the state administration — from September 2011 to January 2015 — by local farmers’ organizations for failing to distribute pledged resources.
In 2014, Martínez acknowledged before the state Congress that of Veracruz’ 750,000 registered farmers, his secretariat was handing out financial aid to just 2,000, or 0.3%.
The former secretary was also involved in the management of a 400-million-peso federal emergency fund approved in 2015 for coffee growers, of which they reportedly received only 117 million.
Macías himself has been closely linked to ex-governor Fidel Herrera, who in 2013 made the Forbes magazine list of Mexico’s 10 most corrupt politicians for alleged links to the Zetas drug cartel. Testimony by a former Gulf Cartel accountant in a U.S. federal court in 2013 alleged that an election campaign for Veracruz governor in 2004 received US $12 million from the cartel.
Herrera won the election that year for the Institutional Revolutionary Party.
Two other witnesses in the same federal court also linked Herrera to the cartel.
The current governor, Javier Duarte, was finance secretary in Herrera’s administration, during which time the 120-hectare Puerto México was built.