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PROSECUTORS CLAIM BROTHER OF EX-PRESIDENT HAD TIES WITH GARCIA ABREGO

Documents from the Office of the Attorney General (PGR) and the National Anti-Drug Institute (ICND) reveal that Raul Salinas de Gortari had ties with druglords in Mexico as early as 1987.

REFORMA has obtained copies of two separate reports indicating that the ex-president's brother had ties with the heads of the Gulf Cartel and providing evidence that link him to the group headed by Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman.

According to one of the documents, Raul Salinas had guaranteed protection to the group led by Juan Garcia Abrego at the time Carlos Salinas was a presidential candidate in 1987.

In return, according to the document, Raul Salinas received "a lot of presents" from the heads of the Gulf Cartel, through an intermediary called "Don Francisco" or "Don Paco", who "has a daughter who works" in the Attorney General's office. As of yesterday, the full name of this "Don Francisco" was still unknown.

The document reports three different meetings between Raul Salinas and members of the Gulf Cartel at which Manual Munoz Bocha (former Deputy charged with having taken part in planning the murders of Jose Francisco Ruiz Massieu and several Tamaulipas businessmen) was also present.

In the report marked SAP/1452/95, dated 30 November 1995, PGP officials notify the British Attorney, General Sir Nicholas Lyell, that "investigations with regard to possible acts ...of illicit enrichment, tax evasion and money laundering were being conducted" as part of the indictments against Raul Salinas.

An appended document, translated from English and submitted to the Mexican courts in the course of the continuing criminal trials of Raul Salinas, states:

"In May 1987, the informant attended a party given for the PRI's presidential candidate, Carlos Salinas de Gortari, at a ranch in the township of Faras, Nuevo Leon."

"Attending the party were Raul Salinas, Augustino Cisneros (aka Juan Garcia Abrego), Juan N. Guerra (Garcia Abrego's uncle), Manuel Munoz Rocha, Ricardo Aguirro Villagomez, Sergio Arguelles, Ramiro Hernandez, Fernando Garcia Hinojosa and Don Jesus Garcia Ruiz."

One of the individuals mentioned -- Tamaulipas businessman and major Banco Alianza shareholder Sergio Arguelles -- denied the allegation. "It's a lie. I wasn't ever at that party. Never," he stated last night in a telephone interview. "I don't know any member of the Salinas family, nobody, and I've never been in Paras."

The other document, which suggests the existence of ties between Raul Salinas and Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman Loera, currently imprisoned for drug trafficking in Almoloya de Juarez, is an INCD report.

Dated 4 March 1996, this report is addressed to Sergio Casanueva Roguart, the PGR's General Director for International Legal Affairs, in reply to a request for "any information linking Raul Salinas de Gortari with Juan Garcia Abrego or any other criminal organization."

In this regard, the INCD points out that Bartolo Pineda Medrano, a participant in the Guadalajara Airport shootout in which Cardinal Ocampo was killed, stated under questioning that he had met "El Chapo" at the Santa Anita ranch in the...[text ends].

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