23 | SEP | 2019
Ana Guevara was granted a tax pardon by the Peña Nieto administration
Ana Guevara is a former Olympian who later became a politician - Photo: Ivan Stephens/EL UNIVERSAL

Ana Guevara was granted a tax pardon by the Peña Nieto administration

25/08/2019
17:25
Mexico City
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It was rumored that Guevara owed a favor to a powerful politician who had helped her avoid jail

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The Sports Minister and former athlete, Ana Gabriela Guevara, was investigated for tax fraud during the Felipe Calderón administration and in 2014, she was pardoned for this crime, during the Peña Nieto administration, one month after she declined to become Morena's candidate for governor in the state of Sonora.

In March 2014, during a visit to Sonora, López Obrador said that the candidates for the 2015 election in Sonora would be Ana Guevara or Alfonso Durazo. While Morena decided who would be the candidate, the then-senator was trying to avoid a legal accusation that was pending at a federal tribunal but that once she was not a senator any longer, it could proceed.

According to documents obtained by EL UNIVERSAL, the investigation against the former Olympian started during the Felipe Calderón administration in 2010, when the Finance Ministry realized that she had evaded taxes in 2005, causing damage for MXN $699,681.35 to the public purse.

Four years later, on August 2014, officials from the Finance Ministry, then led by Luis Videgaray, signed a document to grant her a “tax pardon” and request to dismiss the legal process. Furthermore, tax pardon is a law that has been quite controversial because it is used in a very selective and discreet way. Also, the Finance Ministry is not obliged to explain the motivations behind the pardon and refuses to reveal the list of those who have been pardoned.

As EL UNIVERSAL revealed, Ana Guevara, the head of the National Physical Culture and Sports Commission (CONADE), was one of the beneficiaries. Moreover, it is important to remember that Guevara declined to run for governor in Sonora and then voiced her support for the PRI candidate Claudia Pavlovich.

An old investigation

On August 2010, three months after the auditors discovered that Guevara had lied in regards to her income, did not pay her income tax, and obtained tax deductions even though she didn't present the proper documents, the Tax Crimes Office from the Finance Ministry filed a complaint before the PGR for Guevara's possible participation in a tax crime.

The PGR launched a preliminary investigation and on August 2011, it finally brought it before a tribunal in Mexico City, where it was registered.

In January 2012, during a visit to Sonora, the López Obrador announced the former athlete would run for Senator and on March 2012, Guevara was sentenced to prison but since the crime was not considered as a felony, she wasn't imprisoned. On August 2012, Ana Guevara took office as a lawmaker and two days later, the tribunal was notified as her new positions, therefore, it halted the process against her, as she now had immunity.

The PGR filed a complaint and argued that Guevara wasn't a public servant when she perpetrated the crimes but it didn't obtain any results are the investigation was frozen for two years.

Guevara ask for a pardon

On May 2014, senator Ana Guevara sent a letter to the Finance Ministry to ask for a pardon after she was accused of tax fraud.

In a document, Guevara explained that she had paid her debt and that thanks to a new program launched by then-President Peña Nieto, she only had to pay 20% of her original debt.

In August 2014, after Guevara declined to become Morena's candidate to the state of Sonora, the head of the Tax Fraud Office, José Miguel Contreras Saldívar, and the Assistant Attorney Josué Ulises Gómez Nolasco, decided to grant the tax pardon to Guevara. The case was closed on September 2014 but the resolution was never made public.

After she was pardoned, Guevara shared a video where she asked people to vote for the PRI candidate and it was rumored that the former athlete owed a favor to a powerful politician who had helped her avoid jail.
 

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Ana Guevara keeps quiet

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