Money laundering at the state oil company Pemex is being investigated in connection with the murder Thursday of a company engineer in Salamanca, Guanajuato, officials with knowledge of the case told the newspaper Milenio.
The Guanajuato Attorney General’s office is pursuing that line of investigation due to the position the homicide victim held at the Antonio M. Amor refinery in Salamanca, Milenio said.
Gabriel Alejandro Aguilar Mancera worked in the refinery’s department of public works and acquisitions, a position from which he allegedly could have facilitated the laundering of illicitly-gained funds from organized crime groups through the awarding of Pemex contracts.
Aguilar was attacked at 8:00am Thursday by a group of armed men in a pickup truck as he drove his eight-year-old son to school.
In addition to collecting spent bullet casings found at the crime scene in the neighborhood of El Vergel, authorities also recovered evidence allegedly linking the slain official to organized crime, Milenio said.
Aguilar’s son was not shot but received treatment for injuries caused by glass splinters. He is reported to be in stable condition.
The murder is the second of a Pemex employee this year after the oil company’s former chief of security in Salamanca, Tadeo Lineol Alfonzo Rojas, was shot and killed in January. He was also taking his children to school when he was attacked.
In May, the newspaper Reforma reported that Pemex personnel at the Salamanca refinery were under investigation by federal authorities for fuel theft, but the Interior Secretariat said later the same month that the practice had been interrupted.
Guanajuato was Mexico’s most violent state in the first eight months of the year in terms of homicide numbers, with 1,671 victims.
A significant number of the deaths in the state are believed to be related to pipeline petroleum theft and the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG), considered Mexico’s most dangerous and powerful criminal organization, is reportedly involved in a turf war in Guanajuato with the crime gang known as Santa Rosa de Lima.
Source: Milenio (sp)