Mexican cartel leader's wife charged with money laundering

Source: Xinhua| 2018-06-03 14:29:52|Editor: ZD
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MEXICO CITY, June 2 (Xinhua) -- A federal judge on Saturday charged the wife of the leader of Mexico's powerful Jalisco New Generation Cartel with money laundering, authorities said.

Rosalinda Gonzalez Valencia was charged with establishing companies for an explicit purpose of laundering money for the cartel headed by her husband, Nemesio Oseguera Cervantes.

After a 12-hour hearing, Judge Ivan Zeferin ruled that prosecutors had presented sufficient evidence to show Gonzalez created companies and then dissolved them to obscure the paper trail.

Gonzalez's companies have been included in a blacklist compiled by the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control, due to those companies' link to the cartel.

Mexico's Center for Investigation and National Security (CISEN) was also aware that her companies were linked to the cartel's illicit operations.

Mexican authorities arrested Gonzalez last Saturday in Guadalajara, capital of western Jalisco state as well as Mexico's second-largest city, after a judge issued a warrant for her arrest.

Local media said her network of companies laundered some 1.1 billion pesos (54.9 million U.S. dollars) in 2015 and 2016.

Prosecutors also wanted to charge Gonzalez with organized crime, but during a closed-door hearing, she denied being a member of the cartel.

After the hearing in central Mexico State, Gonzalez was flown by helicopter to a federal women's prison in central Morelos state, where she will remain while undergoing trial.

Today, the Jalisco-based cartel is considered the most powerful in Mexico. Oseguera, a former police officer from a small town in southern Jalisco, is one of Mexico's most-wanted drug lords.