Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Ex-Pemex chief accuses Peña Nieto of using bribes to fund election campaign

Former Pemex CEO Emilio Lozoya has implicated former president Enrique Peña Nieto and his cabinet minister Luis Videgaray in the Odebrecht case, Attorney General Alejandro Gertz Manero said on Tuesday.

Lozoya was arrested in Spain in February on charges of accepting bribes in the Odebrecht scandal and was extradited to Mexico in July. 

Gertz said that according to a statement by Lozoya, bribes by the Brazilian company Odebrecht exceeded 100 million pesos, just shy of US $4.5 million, which were used mainly for Peña Nieto’s presidential election campaign. 

Peña Nieto and Videgaray turned over the money to several foreign electoral advisers who collaborated in the campaign, the attorney general said.

Lozoya told the attorney general the money was also used to purchase votes for the 2013 and 2014 structural reforms.

In that case, Lozoya said that Peña Nieto and Videgary paid a deputy and five senators 120 million pesos.

Lozoya also told Gertz that a petrochemical company called Ethylene XXI, which is linked to a Mexican partner of Odebrecht, received special financial consideration which led to serious financial losses by the Mexican government.

Lozoya stated that Peña Nieto and Videgaray instructed him to hand over 84 million pesos (US $3.7 million) to various legislators and a finance secretary of a political party. Later, they received more than 200 million pesos (US $8.9 million) in bribes for supporting electoral reform.

The attorney general says Lozoya “has indicated four witnesses, has delivered receipts and a video. As of this moment, the Attorney General’s Office has opened the corresponding investigation.” Interviews with witnesses and expert analysis of the evidence Lozoya provided is forthcoming, Gertz said, and Peña Nieto, Videgaray and others Lozoya has named to prosecutors could be called to testify. 

The information released Tuesday had already come out in July through a leaked document but this marks the first official release of the details.

Source: El Financiero (sp)

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