The government of Quintana Roo has been assiduous in its investigation into corruption on the part of the previous administration of Roberto Borge.
But yesterday one of its own was arrested for the use of funds derived from illegal sources.
Juan Melquiades Vergara, who was finance and planning secretary until he resigned in January to run for an elected position, was arrested on charges of laundering over 50 million pesos (US $2.7 million) through tax fraud.
An investigation by the federal tax administration, SAT, found that Vergara received several bank deposits amounting to over 1.4 million pesos (US $75,000) from allegedly illicit sources in 2015.
The Special Prosecutor for Organized Crime (SEIDO) told a press conference that at least 13 shell companies had been created to charge for non-existent services to a third party.
The third party then reported the operations as tax-deductible. “Salary-related income taxes were withheld through this scheme, amounting to over 261 million pesos, even though no payments were made and no workers were registered at the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS),” said Israel Lira Salas.
Vergara stepped down January 9 from his post in the government of Carlos Joaquín González to run as a federal deputy in Quintana Roo under the banner of the coalition formed by the National Action Party, Democratic Revolution Party and the Citizens’ Movement.
His arrest occurred minutes before a scheduled rally in Cancún.
Governor Joaquín said later the charges against Vergara were not related to his job as finance secretary.