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Thou shalt remain silent…

23 December 2008

As far as anyone knows, there was a first in Mexican judicial history this week.   The Bishop of Ecatepec, Onésimo Cepeda Silva, has the unique distinction of being the first prelate formally charged in a criminal court.

Bishop Cededa surrendered voluntarily to the Federal District Public Minister’s (Prosecutor’s) Office, but invoked his right to remain silent, in connection with criminal charges stemming from his administration of the art collection owned by the late Olga Azcárraga Madero.  His Grace is specifially charged with forging documents that gave him control of the estimated 130 million dollar art collection. Although judicial reforms are supposed to reign in impunity, the Bishop was released on his own recognizance, and given until 20 January to answer interrogatories in writing.

cepeda-silvaOlga Azcárraga Madero was one of THE  Azcárraga’s… as in Televisa… as in the devious filthy rich Mexican family that got that way thanks to the success of stories about devious filthy rich Mexicans.

There’s been a three or four way fight over the art collection — with the Mexican government insisting the Riveras, Orozcos, Tamanos, etc. are national patrimony, the various  Azcárraga’s claiming their late relation was unduly influenced to change her will (or, it was changed by the Bishop on the sly), foreign museums and collectors making the usual arguement that only THEY have the resources to protect the art work from the brown horde… and — last time I looked, a Mexican lawyer hiding some of these works on behalf of another foreign claimant.

This is gonna be fun.

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