Mexico needs to rethink its seize and auction processes

The government has created a catalog that shows jewelry, airplanes, ships, and properties

Mexico needs to rethink its seize and auction processes
In the last months, the federal government has auctioned luxury cars and properties formerly owned by criminals - Photo: Francisco Cañedo/Xinhua
English 21/07/2019 09:27 Mexico City Editorial Actualizada 09:35
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One of the most frequent question among Mexicans is what happens to the fortunes and assets seized from criminals. The majority of these objects are luxurious, pretentious, tacky; nevertheless, these assets are worth large sums of money because of the brand, materials, and confection process. The government has created a catalog that shows all kinds of seized goods, including jewelry, airplanes, ships, properties, and land.

What people don't know is that selling seized goods can take up to 10 years because the government has to conclude the investigation it launched against a criminal, even if the criminals died when they were arrested. Furthermore, the Attorney General's Office is swarmed by cases, therefore, there are delays in the investigations required to close a case, thus, it takes longer to hand the assets to the Management Service and Property Disposal Department (SAE), the institution in charge of auctioning the seized goods and raising funds that are later used for construction projects, services, and social programs.

According to the available information in regards to the seized goods during the previous administration, only 2% of the assets have been handed over to the SAE. In this sense, it has been reported that in the last five years, out of 82,000 seized assets, only 1,416 have been handed over to be auctioned. Moreover, many assets don't follow this process because in some cases, goods such as vehicles are used by local governments or are claimed by the criminals' family.

Therefore, the current legislation and legal processes in regards to seized goods have to be reviewed because it is unbelievable that assets seized from prominent criminals have to go through such a long process to be auctioned and obtain resources and allocate them to programs that will benefit Mexican society. It is evident that these delays are the reflection of Mexico's legal system and the voids that show that the processes need to be more efficient to close the cases against high-profile criminals. The Mexican government has to rethink its seize and auction processes.


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