Mexican General is No-Show at Organized Crime Hearing

A Mexican general indicted for abetting billions of dollars in oil theft from the state-run petroleum company Pemex has, not for the first time, failed to appear at his own court hearing the Washington Post reported Sunday.

Andres Manuel Lopez ObradorPresident of Mexico Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador. (Source: Lopez Obrador Official Youtube)The Post says that lawyers for Gen. Eduardo Trauwitz, former chief of security at Pemex, told the court last week that he was out of the country. At previous hearings, they indicated that he was sick.    

President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has made anti-corruption a focus of his administration. In October, the New York Times reported on the resignation of a leader of Mexico’s oil workers union — under pressure from investigations including one by the Mexican attorney general into his unexplained wealth.

Prosecution has been hampered, however, by the authorities’ inability to even locate the general and others indicted in corruption probes.  

Trauwitz’s attorney told the Washington Post that the accusations are false and Trauwitz actually helped to fight oil theft. Trauwitz’s legal team has also stated that he is intentionally evading warrants he believes are politically motivated. 

A series of legal maneuvers reportedly saw Trauwitz’s bank accounts frozen and then unfrozen, a successful injunction filing by lawyers which allowed him to remain free, an arrest warrant for organized crime issued which was then suspended, and then eventually reenacted. By the end of it all, Trauwitz was nowhere to be found.

The Mexican attorney general’s office has reportedly asked for help from Interpol to find Trauwitz, but the Post reports that his name is still not on Interpol’s online wanted list.