1. Skip to content
  2. Skip to main menu
  3. Skip to more DW sites

Mexico to investigate former President Pena Nieto's finances

August 3, 2022

Enrique Pena Nieto, who was in power from 2012 to 2018, has been accused of several alleged crimes including money laundering.

Mexico Enrique Pena Nieto
Enrique Pena Nieto was replaced by Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador and currently resides in MadridImage: Dario Lopez-Mills/AP Photo/picture alliance

Prosecutors in Mexico launched an investigation into former President Enrique Pena Nieto for several alleged crimes, including money laundering and illicit enrichment, weeks after the country's anti-money laundering agency accused him of handling millions of dollars in possibly illegal funds.

In a press statement, the Attorney General's Office (FGR) referred to Pena Nieto as "Enrique 'P'", in line with Mexico’s policy of not identifying those accused of crimes. The statement said he was under investigation for potential election-related crimes tied to a Spanish construction company, including money laundering, illicit enrichment and illegal international transfers.

Mexico’s former leader, who was in office from 2012-2018, now lives in Madrid. He has denied any wrongdoing.

Investigation into financial irregularities

The statement said some of the allegations involved Spanish construction company OHL: "Progress in this investigation will allow prosecutions in the coming months."

The Mexican unit of OHL was fined over inadequacies in its financial reporting in 2016, despite the company maintaining that there was no evidence of fraud. OHL Mexico was also hit by corruption allegations over leaked recordings that appeared to show its executives discussing overcharging the government for a highway concession.

In July, Mexico's anti-money laundering unit said Pena Nieto had received around 26 million pesos ($1.25 million) from a relative in Mexico, calling the FGR to investigate the cash transfers with unknown origins.

He was also believed to have ties with two companies that won lucrative contracts with Mexico during his term.

No charges filed

Pena Nieto had addressed the accusations at the time: "I am certain that before the competent authorities I will be allowed to clarify any question about my assets and demonstrate their legality."

No charges have been filed but the prosecutor's statement said that could change in the coming months.

Left-wing populist leader Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador replaced Pena Nieto as president in 2018. He has repeatedly accused his predecessors of corruption.

see/msh (Reuters, AP, AFP)