HomeNewsBrief‘Journalist Cash Smugglers’ Trial Opens in Nicaragua
BRIEF

‘Journalist Cash Smugglers’ Trial Opens in Nicaragua

MONEY LAUNDERING / 9 NOV 2012 BY ELYSSA PACHICO EN

A group of Mexicans who are on trial in Nicaragua, accused of posing as Televisa journalists while smuggling millions of dollars in cash, may have in fact made several phone calls to the media company, according to a report from Confidencial.

Nicaraguan investigative news website Confidencial reviewed a list of contacts and phone calls on a cell phone owned by a woman identified as the leader of the group. The cell phone had been used to call the number of one contact listed as “Televisa offices,” and another contact with the name of Televisa’s vice president, Amador Narcia. Both numbers have been disconnected.

In total the 18 Mexicans had five cell phones which they used to make 30 calls between August 20, when they were detained at the Honduras-Nicaragua border, and August 24. They were taken into custody after authorities found $9.2 million in cash in one of their vans, as well as traces of cocaine.

One cell phone was used to call the Mexican consulate after the alleged smugglers were detained. The consul told Confidencial that the Mexicans had called the consulate’s public number, and described themselves as Televisa journalists who had been detained.

The trial of the Mexicans starts November 9 in Managua. They are charged with money laundering and drug trafficking.

InSight Crime Analysis

The Confidencial report raises questions about whether there was some kind of relationship between the alleged smugglers and the Mexican media company, which has denied all ties to the group. At the very least, the evidence suggests that the smugglers went to great lengths to present themselves as legitimate Televisa employees. A folder previously discovered in the smugglers’ van contained several papers signed in the name of Amador Nacia, who has said that the signatures were faked.

The detainees are accused of making hundreds of trips between Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica since 2010. As Confidencial reported, there are still plenty of unanswered questions about the case which may be addressed during the public trial. It is still unclear just how much money and drugs the crew allegedly managed to smuggle through Nicaragua before they were arrested. Nor is it clear whether they had accomplices in Nicaragua, or whether they were working for an organized criminal group in Mexico.

Compartir icon icon icon

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

FRANCISCO ZELEDON / 6 AUG 2012

Francisco, or Frank, Zeledon, allegedly runs a drug trafficking network from the city of Bluefields on Nicaragua’s Caribbean coast. He…

MEXICO / 12 OCT 2012

Mexico passed an anti-money laundering law that limits cash purchases of houses, cars, and other goods, in an effort…

ARGENTINA / 24 SEP 2018

The recent indictment of a former president as part of a larger anti-corruption investigation is the latest in a series…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

We Have Updated Our Website

4 FEB 2021

Welcome to our new home page. We have revamped the site to create a better display and reader experience.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Events – Border Crime: The Northern Triangle and Tri-Border Area

ARGENTINA / 25 JAN 2021

Through several rounds of extensive field investigations, our researchers have analyzed and mapped out the main illicit economies and criminal groups present in 39 border departments spread across the six countries of study – the Northern Triangle trio of Guatemala, Honduras, and El…

BRIEF

InSight Crime’s ‘Memo Fantasma’ Investigation Wins Simón Bolívar National Journalism Prize

COLOMBIA / 20 NOV 2020

The staff at InSight Crime was awarded the prestigious Simón Bolívar national journalism prize in Colombia for its two-year investigation into the drug trafficker known as “Memo Fantasma,” which was…

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – From Uncovering Organized Crime to Finding What Works

COLOMBIA / 12 NOV 2020

This project began 10 years ago as an effort to address a problem: the lack of daily coverage, investigative stories and analysis of organized crime in the Americas. …

ANALYSIS

InSight Crime – Ten Years of Investigating Organized Crime in the Americas

FEATURED / 2 NOV 2020

In early 2009, Steven Dudley was in Medellín, Colombia. His assignment: speak to a jailed paramilitary leader in the Itagui prison, just south of the city. Following his interview inside…