Reporting on the Mexican Cartel Drug War

Ex-mayor of Cancun released as case appears to collapse

Thursday, July 21, 2011 |

Former Cancun Mayor Gregorio Sanchez, accompanied by his lawyers, leaves the Office of Special Investigations in Mexico City. (Alex Cruz / European Pressphoto Agency / July 20, 2011)

A judge had dismissed charges of drug trafficking and money laundering against Gregorio 'Greg' Sanchez. Mexican prosecutors say he may yet be charged with smuggling undocumented Cubans.

By Tracy Wilkinson, Los Angeles Times

Yet another high-profile drug-prosecution case in Mexico careened toward collapse Wednesday when federal officials were forced to release the former mayor of Cancun, arrested 14 months ago for allegedly consorting with violent cartels.

Gregorio "Greg" Sanchez, toting a red Bible, walked out of a jail cell into the summer light around midday and proclaimed, again, his innocence.

But federal prosecutors said they planned to charge him with the smuggling of undocumented Cubans. Cancun is the piece of Mexican territory that juts out closest to Cuba.

And in a novelty for Mexico, federal authorities ordered Sanchez to wear an electronic ankle bracelet so they could track his movements.

That was necessary, said the head of the attorney general's organized crime unit, Patricia Bugarin, because prosecutors could not immediately find a judge willing to issue an arrest warrant for Sanchez on the new charges. Several judges declined for jurisdictional reasons, and a higher court that could have decided the matter is on summer vacation.

Last week, a judge dismissed the drug-trafficking and money-laundering charges against Sanchez and ordered him freed.

Bugarin said federal prosecutors continued to investigate drug-trafficking allegations against Sanchez and might charge him again.

Some observers see the attempted prosecution as political persecution. Sanchez was arrested in May 2010 as he campaigned for governor of his state for the leftist Democratic Revolution Party, an opposition force.

"This is all a juridical hoax," the party's president, Jesus Zambrano, said Wednesday.

Last month, authorities arrested the powerful former mayor of Tijuana, Jorge Hank Rhon, on weapons and drug-trafficking charges but released him days later.

Share it:

5 Borderland Beat Comments:

Anonymous said...

Mexicans are nothing if not innovative - in the sense of making do with what you have. When they couldn't find a judge to issue a new arrest warrant for the Mayor, they happened to have an electronic ankle bracelet on hand. Though designed to be used to monitor the movement of convicted people on parole or under house arrest, they figured out it would work just as well to monitor the Mayor until they could find a judge willing to give them an arrest warrant. Brilliant.

Anonymous said...

Arrest,Pictures,publicity,few months in jail,DISMISSAL, Is it INCOMPITENCE,CORRUPTION,LAZYNESS, A combination, what is up with Mexicans and Their Legal System or LACK THEREOF???

Anonymous said...

In todays Internet enviorment Mexico needs to know that when a country is INCOMPITENT the whole world knows it,you would think there would be some pride,some glimmer of accomplishment but no its the same old Bull Shit, and thats why people think poorly of Mexico and Mexicans,If you want respect EARN IT.

Anonymous said...

Mexico, land of the criminals and corrupt.

Anonymous said...

What? Interrupt your summer recess to adjudicate a rat?

...otro pillo le gana a la justicia...

¿So, what else is new in my beloved Mexico?

Post a Comment

Comments are moderated, refer to policy for more information.
Envía fotos, vídeos, notas, enlaces o información
Todo 100% Anónimo;

borderlandbeat@gmail.com