On November 9th, the State Congress of Chiapas challenged the constitutional PRD mayor of Pantelho, Raquel Trujillo Morales, at the request of the State Attorney General’s Office (FGE), which in recent days initiated an investigation file against him for the murder of Mario Santiz Lopez on July 3 of this year.
On October 21st, the attorney general of the state of Chiapas, Olaf Hernandez, referred the investigation file 0290/078/1001/2021 to the local Congress, for the crime of homicide that was allegedly perpetrated or ordered by Mayor Raquel Trujillo Morales. A source close to the now former mayor indicated that he was never notified in person about the investigation file that the Chiapas Prosecutor’s Office was conducting, for which it is considered a violation and leaves him defenseless, violating his constitutional guarantees.
Trujillo Morales himself confirmed the information and said that he would face his defense, safeguard his integrity and that of his family, and in due course show the evidence “of the persecution to which I am the object, without knowing why; first, God, I will return to my municipality with my head held high.” He added: “I cannot deny you my anger and frustration because with their hands on their hips the institutions, which are supposed to exist to guarantee the rule of law, lend themselves to these tricks.”
Raquel Trujillo Morales was elected as municipal president on June 6th of this year. Nominated by the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), he took office on October 1st although he could not exercise his position. The municipal council elected on August 9th after the emergence of the group, which defines itself as, ” El Machete Peoples’ Self-defense Groups”, theoretically concluded its functions on September 30th, but continues to govern de facto, because they do not want to allow Raquel Trujillo Morales due to his links to organized crime in this municipality.
As well as Trujillo Morales, his support group allegedly resigned, so the absence of powers was declared in Pantelho and now new councilors will be recognized.
On November 8th, relatives of the residents held in Pantelho on July 26th held a protest to demand the appearance of the 21 people deprived of their liberty. Relatives blame the El Machete group, “first they said that when they were given the municipal council they would give us our relatives, but it was a lie; now they want the council again and they don’t say where they are. Look at those from Altamirano, they wanted their council, but they showed proof of life. That’s what we want.” “It is not fair that they (the opponents of Trujillo Morales) want to be given their municipal council and do not want to give us our relatives”, said one of the protesters.
For their part, the El Machete self-defense group indicates Raquel Trujillo Morales as an accomplice of the Los Herrera armed group, whose founder, Austreberto Herrera, and his son Dayli de los Santos Herrera, are imprisoned in El Amate prison in Cintalapa, for various crimes. The Herreras are accused of homicides and forced disappearances in Pantelho, in addition to maintaining control of the municipal government for more than ten years.
Trujillo Morales affirmed that “if the law requires it, I agree to resign” so that the 21 inhabitants are returned, accused by El Machete of having ties with the Herreras and of murdering some 200 people in the previous 20 years.
For more information in Spanish:
Quitan fuero a Raquel Trujillo Morales, alcalde de Pantelhó, Chiapas (Milenio, 9 de noviembre de 2021)
Congreso de Chiapas retira fuero constitucional a alcalde de Pantelhó; es acusado de homicidio (Proceso, 9 de noviembre de 2021)
Desafueran al alcalde de Pantelhó, Raquel Trujillo Morales (La Jornada, 10 de noviembre de 2021)
Piden presentación con vida de 21 desaparecidos en Pantelhó (La Jornada, 8 de noviembre de 2021)
Raquel Trujillo alcalde de Pantelhó podría dejar el cargo debido a “Los Machetes” (El Heralde de Chiapas, 8 de noviembre de 2021)
Familiares de desaparecidos en Pantelhó cierran con candados accesos del Congreso de Chiapas (El Universal, 8 de noviembre de 2021)
For more information from SIPAZ: