June 12, 2001
Narco News 2001
Mexico, June 13 (Notimex): The leader
of the Democratic Revolution Party (PRD, in its Spanish acronym)
in the Mexican Congress, Senator Jesús Ortega Martínez,
denounced that Carlos Saúl Menem, ex-president of Argentina
(now under house arrest on arms trafficking charges), laundered
money in subsidiaries of Citigroup, the institution that is trying
to acquire Banamex.
During today's session, the legislator
said that according to reports received from Argentina Senators
and Congress members, Menem obtained large quantities of money
from the trafficking arms to countries at war, funds that were
deposited in banks that belong to Citigroup with the goal of
He assured that there are proofs of the
participation of the banks belonging to Citigroup in the laundering
of the money of Menem and his collaborators, and Ortega Martínez
asked Mexican authorities to thoroughly analyze the proposal
by Banamex to sell all its stocks to the United States institution.
Citibank, belonging to Citigroup - said
the legislator - is under investigation by the United States
Senate for laundering money from narco-trafficking and is investigated
for the recommendation that the parent company, with its seat
in New York, made to its Argentina subsidiary to receive deposits
from the Mexican narco-trafficker Amado Carrillo Fuentes.
For the Senator, this situation must be
analyzed in detail because if it doesn't take urgent and immediate
action, Mexico could find itself in a situation similar to that
of Argentina, in which the citizenry has lost faith and respect
for the institutions because of the corruption fed by foreign
Ortega Martínez said that he knew
that a California Congreswoman asked the Federal Reserve Board
to suspend the merger of Citibank with the Travelers company,
that at the time represented the most important deal in that
"I have presented diverse arguments
and elements regarding the deal between Citigroup and Banamex
and that has permitted that the theme of FOBAPROA and its possible
implications of corruption in which government officials and
bank owners could have participated is a theme that has revived
among public opinion."
He added that all the accusations of corruption
and money laundering that have been made against Citibank must
not be forgotten: "We cannot permit them to be buried 40
feet underground. We cannot ignore all the crimes committed during
the bank rescue in Mexico."
The Senator warned that if the illegality is not combatted, if
the guilty parties are not punished and if the impunity is not
ended, "we will be at risk that the same thing happens to
our country as happened to Argentina's society, and Mexico will
remain in a serious economic and moral crisis."
Meanwhile, as proposed by Ortega Martínez,
the Joint Congressional Leadership Committee approved unanimously
an agreement that the Congress will ask the IPAB fund for the
purchasing contracts on the loan deals between FOBAPROA and the
banks to verify whether any crime was committed during the bank
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