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Judge confirms Lozoya’s preventive detention until the end of his process

Gustavo Castillo and Cesar Arellano

Newspaper La Jornada
Thursday, January 27, 2022, p. 4

Federal judge José Artemio Zúñiga Mendoza confirmed that the former director of Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) Emilio Lozoya Austin should remain in prison, considering that there is a possibility that he will evade Mexican justice, since he has the financial resources to flee, a network of family and friends in Mexico and abroad who could help him escape.

In this way, the possibility of facing his criminal proceedings in the Odebrecht case in freedom was closed, in a hearing held in the North Prison, where he has been imprisoned since last November 3. As part of the expectations that were generated regarding his release from prison, Emilio Lozoya’s defense requested an amparo –which was rejected–, but with which he sought that if there is any other arrest warrant against him, the commandment will not be executed.

Zuniga Mendoza stated: the FGR justified in a well-founded and motivated manner the objective variation of the conditions by which the precautionary measures were imposed, for which the accused will remain in justified preventive detention until the end of the process.

At the end of the procedure that lasted approximately 50 minutes, upset with the judicial decision, Lozoya Austin took the copies of the resolution of the third court that ordered the review of his precautionary measures and tore them up.

During the hearing, Judge Zúñiga Mendoza pointed out that Lozoya Austin –who is facing two criminal proceedings for the crimes of operations with resources of illicit origin, bribery and criminal association–, has a family network that can help him evade Mexican justice, since that his wife and children live abroad – they are of German nationality – and he has the resources to hide in another nation.

In addition, the judge confirmed that both the network of relatives and acquaintances and having an account with 2 million euros constitute different situations from those of the former director of Pemex in July 2020, when it was approved that he face his trial in freedom. .

The diligence was carried out by determination of the third unitary court, which ruled that Judge Zúñiga should analyze elements of evidence that were not taken into consideration at the hearing on November 3 when issuing the precautionary measure of justified preventive detention at the request of the Federal Public Ministry.

For this reason, from the beginning of the hearing, the judge called on the defense of the former director of Pemex to refrain from continuing to submit briefs requesting immediate release, since this matter has been legally decided.

As part of the arguments to deny him his freedom, he stated that Emilio Lozoya has not repaired the damage caused to the treasury estimated at more than 7 million dollars, nor has the criterion of opportunity been specified despite the fact that he denounced a corrupting apparatus.

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