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New Criminal Charge Filed Against Former Teacher Union Leader Gordillo

Circe Vargon - The News
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October 12, 2013
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In this photo released by Mexico's federal court system, the head of Mexico's powerful teachers' union, Elba Esther Gordillo, stands behind bars as she appears for a hearing at a federal prison in Mexico City, Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2013. (AP/Juzgado Sexto de Distrito en Procesos Penales Federales)

MEXICO CITY – The Attorney General’s Office (PGR) laid another criminal charge against former National Education Workers Union (SNTE) leader Elba Esther Gordillo, this week.

Gordillo is now charged with tax fraud, in addition to embezzlement and racketeering.

According to the PGR’s Tax and Financial Crimes Unit, Gordillo’s 2008 income tax declarations report income that was significantly lower than what she actually received.

During her 24-year reign as leader of the SNTE, Gordillo was known for her lavish lifestyle.

She repeatedly underwent plastic surgery, owned a private jet and beachfront property in California, and allegedly spent over $2 million at a Neiman Marcus store in San Diego.

Gordillo is currently in Tepepan jail awaiting trial. She successfully applied for an amparo (similar to habeas corpus) in September after arguing that the original charges were not sufficiently grounded, but was not set free. A PGR spokesperson said that the government hopes the new charges will “provide new results.”

She will be transferred to a private hospital in southern Mexico City in the coming days to undergo maxillofacial studies.

Mexico City Mayor Miguel Ángel Mancera said that, according to her lawyers, Gordillo’s release from prison is strictly in accordance with her health needs, as the prison hospital is not equipped to perform the specialized studies they claim she needs.

See the original at The News

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