Saturday, June 15, 2024

Fugitive ex-mayor of Toluca arrested in Mexico City

The former mayor of Toluca, accused of ordering the unlawful arrest of his former father-in-law, has been captured in Mexico City after nearly two months on the run.

Raymundo Martínez Carbajal was arrested in the early hours of Thursday morning by military ministerial police, according to a statement by the México State Prosecutor’s Office (FGJEM). He was transferred to the FGJEM’s facilities under charges including “express kidnapping” and extortion.

Security forces first tried to execute an arrest warrant against Martínez on Nov. 24, carrying out three searches on properties linked to the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) politician in Toluca and Metepec. However, they were unable to locate Martínez, prompting speculation that he had fled the country.

On Dec. 1, Interpol issued a Red Notice for Martínez — a request to international law enforcement to detain a fugitive pending extradition. Martínez was officially removed from his position as mayor of Toluca, to which he was elected in Dec. 2021. On Dec. 12, Juan Maccise Naime, also of the PRI, was appointed to replace Martínez until the end of his term in 2024.

Martínez is accused of ordering Toluca municipal police in April 2023 to arrest his former father-in-law, Emilio Rodríguez, a public official in the National System for the Integral Development of Families (DIF). Rodríguez was held against his will in the Municipal Qualification Office, accused of diverting resources from the DIF. No official warrant was ever issued for his arrest.

Martínez’s ex-wife, Viridiana Rodríguez, subsequently filed a complaint to the FGJEM, alleging that Martínez had orchestrated the unlawful detention to force her to return personal documents and sign a confidentiality agreement following their divorce.

Viridiana Rodríguez
Martínez Carbajal’s wife, Viridiana Rodríguez, accused Martínez of years of abuses as well as the “express kidnapping” of her father-in-law. (Toluca municipal government)

In a video, Rodríguez accused the politician of subjecting her to twelve years of “physical, emotional and sexual violence.” She said that the arbitrary detention of her father was part of a campaign of intimidation against her, also including threats and offensive language, in revenge for her decision to leave Martínez in Feb. 2023.

Two former municipal government officials and a police officer have already been arrested in the case.

It is expected that Martínez will now be transferred to the Santiaguito State Prison, in Almoloya de Juárez, México state, to await an initial court hearing.

With reports from Reforma and El Financiero

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