HomeNewsBriefHonduras Elite Speaks Out Against US Money Laundering Charges
BRIEF

Honduras Elite Speaks Out Against US Money Laundering Charges

CACHIROS / 9 OCT 2015 BY DAVID GAGNE EN

One of the Honduran elites accused by US authorities of money laundering, Yani Rosenthal, has spoken publicly to deny his family's alleged links to drug trafficking, as one Honduras' wealthiest and most politically influential families fights to protect its tarnished reputation.

In an interview with newspaper El Heraldo, Yani Rosenthal, the son of former Vice President Jaime Rosenthal Oliva, denied the criminal charges that were made public by US authorities on October 7. The release of the indictment accusing Jaime, his nephew Yankel Rosenthal, Yani and a lawyer associated with the family of money laundering came just one day after Yankel was arrested in Miami

"For over 80 years Grupo Continental has operated in Honduras, the majority of people who are familiar with this group, know... that at no point have we been drug traffickers nor money launderers," Yani said, referring to the Rosenthals' economic conglomerate that is one of the biggest in Honduras.

SEE ALSO: Coverage of Elites and Organized Crime

Rosenthal also stated that any information provided to US authorities by extradited drug traffickers about the Rosenthals' criminal activities was false, and that those individuals were looking to "save themselves." Yani did not mention any specific names, but in June, his father Jaime told InSight Crime that the Rosenthals had done business for years with one of Honduras' biggest drug trafficking clans, the Cachiros. The top members of the Cachiros handed themselves in to US authorities in January.

In addition to the indictment, the US Treasury placed Yani, Jaime and Yankel on its drug "Kingpin" list, along with several of the Rosenthals' businesses.

InSight Crime Analysis

Yani's outspoken defense is likely a sign of what is at stake for him if the accusations against his family are not thoroughly disproved. 

Not as much attention has been placed on Yani since news of the indictment broke, as Jaime is the head of the family business and Yankel is the only member arrested so far. However, Yani, a political and economic heavyweight in his own right, may have the most to lose from this situation.

The indictment will likely ruin any political aspirations Yani may have harbored. He has previously served in the government of former President Manuel Zelaya, and unsuccessfully ran in the last presidential election.  

The charges will also, in all likelihood, have a serious impact on Grupo Continental, which Yani helps run alongside his octogenarian father. Due to their new "kingpin" status, US citizens are now prohibited from doing business with Yani, Jaime or Yankel.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

HOMICIDES / 16 NOV 2017

In our November 16 Facebook Live session, InSight Crime co-director Steven Dudley sat down with senior investigator Héctor Silva Ávalos…

HONDURAS / 2 MAR 2016

An ongoing security operation against the Mara Salvatrucha in Honduras has uncovered evidence that suggests the street gang is becoming…

HONDURAS / 26 APR 2018

A network of identity traffickers in Honduras may have sold forged documents to hundreds of immigrants from other continents, taking…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime’s Greater Focus on US-Mexico Border

20 JUL 2021

InSight Crime has decided to turn many of its investigative resources towards understanding and chronicling the criminal dynamics along the US-Mexico border.

THE ORGANIZATION

Key Arrests and Police Budget Increases Due to InSight Crime Investigations

8 JUL 2021

With Memo Fantasma’s arrest, InSight Crime has proven that our investigations can and will uncover major criminal threats in the Americas.

THE ORGANIZATION

Organized Crime’s Influence on Gender-Based Violence

30 JUN 2021

InSight Crime investigator Laura N. Ávila spoke on organized crime and gender-based violence at the launch of a research project by the United Nations Development Programme.

THE ORGANIZATION

Conversation with Paraguay Judicial Operators on PCC

24 JUN 2021

InSight Crime Co-director Steven Dudley formed part of a panel attended by over 500 students, all of whom work in Paraguay's judicial system.

THE ORGANIZATION

Combating Environmental Crime in Colombia

15 JUN 2021

InSight Crime presented findings from an investigation into the main criminal activities fueling environmental destruction in Colombia.