Businessman reveals Emilio Lozoya created a corruption network inside Pemex

Emilio Lozoya made explosive claims against ex-president Enrique Peña Nieto this week

Businessman reveals Emilio Lozoya created a corruption network inside Pemex
Some of the companies harassed by Pemex include Blue Marine, Oceanografía, and Evya - Photo: CUARTOSCURO.COM
English 13/08/2020 12:13 Noé Cruz Serrano Mexico City Actualizada 12:19

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A businessman from the energy sector revealed the existence of a corruption network at Pemex during Emilio Lozoya’s administration. The network was used to rob suppliers and contractors of their companies. 

Emilio Lozoya Austin is now a cooperating witness. Federal prosecutors charged him with bribery, money laundering, and conspiracy. This week, he filed a lawsuit against ex-president Enrique Peña Nieto and Luis Videgaray, who allegedly instructed him to use Odebrecht bribes to pay the foreign consultants who worked in Peña Nieto’s presidential campaign in 2012. They also told Lozoya to distribute millions in bribes among lawmakers to make sure they approved a series of structural reforms. 

Pemex harassed, launched audits through Pemex Exploration and Production (PEP), and withheld payments from these companies. Then the oil-company offered to acquire the company and asked them to work for the new owners.

After news broke that Lozoya had videos and recordings of his meetings with businessmen from the energy sector, which he plans to use in his defense, it was revealed that some of these business owners were victims of the corruption network that reigned at Pemex.

Some of the companies harassed by Pemex include Blue Marine, Oceanografía, and Evya

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Evya operated 27 Pemex contracts worth MXN 10,901 million and a shipyard used for the construction of oil rigs in Dos Bocas, Paraíso, and Tabasco. 

Owner Javier Camargo Salinas told EL UNIVERSAL about a scheme to rob him of his company through fraud allegations against bank Citigroup in 2014. When PEP’s audit department requested revision of the 20 contracts, it caused banks to freeze Evya’s credits. 

Camargo Salinas remembers how Lozoya Austin asked to meet on May 14, 2012, at Pemex’s offices in Mexico City. Lozoya informed the businessman that some investors, including Fausto Miranda and Ricardo Maldonado, were going to save his company. 

Salinas lives in Ciudad del Carmen, Campeche. He says that three days before his meeting with the former Pemex chief, the scheduled visit to review Evya’s contracts was canceled. The businessman argues “Lozoya already had the intention to keep the company and contracts somehow.”
When Pemex withheld payments, the company was forced “to give up the company shares.” Evya then became Avalon Marine.

Camargo Salinas met with investors Fausto Miranda and Ricardo Maldonado, who were sent to Evya’s shipyard by Lozoya on July 2014.

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Maldonado was a partner at the Mijares, Angoitia, Cortés & Fuentes law firm. One of the law firm founders is Alfonso de Angoitia, a Televisa CEO. 

Joshua Fink, the son of Laurence Fink, the executive director at BlackRock, and Ignacio Quesada, the head of Álvarez & Marsal Holdings LLC, were also present at the meeting. 

Ignacio Quesada worked for Ernesto Cordero at the Social Development and Finance ministries. He was Pemex’s finance director between 2011 and 2013.

Álvarez & Marsal reviewed 27 contracts to make sure Evya was a profitable business.

Back then, Evya’s contracts were worth MXN 10,901 million, but it had only received MXN 5,551 million. Fausto Miranda offered MXN 1,000 million to save the company; however, if Camargo Salinas refused the offer, he would pay the price. 

The businessman says they told him he would “still be Evya’s president, but without power and with an MXN 300,000 monthly salary.”

Blue Marine & Oceanografía

Both Blue Marine and Oceanografía faced similar situations. Sources close to the companies said Blue Marine opposed the sale. On the other hand, authorities accused Oceanografía of a USD 400 million fraud against Banamex, and its owner, Amado Yáñez ended up in jail. 

Subtec, Blue Marine Shipping, Blue Marine Oil and Gas, and Subsea 7 formed Blue Marine as a consortium. It rented vessels to Pemex.

The main shareholders include José Antonio Marcos Issa, who worked for two former Pemex directors: Rogelio Montemayor and Raúl Muñoz Leos.

The Public Administration Ministry investigated and sanctioned Blue Marine. It has also received a series of observations from the Superior Audit Office after it found influence-peddling in some tenders. This was used by Emilio Lozoya’s corruption network to try and take over the company.

Regarding Oceanografía, Banamex accused the company of fraud on February 28, 2014. The Attorney General’s Office launched an investigation and seized the company’s assets.