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At the forum "Young and Committed", Commissioner Iván Velásquez called upon the youth to join forces in fighting impunity.

La Antigua town hall councillor arrested

Guatemala, 9 May 2014. After he had absconded for five months, the National Civil Police (PNC), with the support of the Public Prosecutor's Office (MP) and CICIG, arrested Carlos Roberto Mérida Reynoso, councillor of La Antigua Guatemala town hall, on 7 May 2014. Mérida Reynoso is charged with participating in acts of corruption in La Antigua, along with Mayor Adolfo Vivar Marroquín, who is currently being held in pre-trial detention.

The arrest warrant was ordered by High-Risk Court B in relation to charges of criminal association, bribery, extortion and embezzlement. The arrest was made at a private sanatorium, and the individual was located through joint efforts undertaken between the MP Directorate of Criminal Investigation and CICIG investigators.

The investigations established that Mérida Reynoso authorized the illegal purchase of materials and the procurement of services. The accused formed part of the second tier of the criminal structure.

Fifteen other individuals are being prosecuted in this case, including Mayor Adolfo Vivar Marroquín and current and former employees of La Antigua town hall. Eleven individuals have already been convicted of different charges in summary proceedings. Councillor José Antonio Palomo Cajas is still absconding.

Mayor Adolfo Vivar Marroquín and the other accused allegedly created a structure to misappropriate town hall funds using companies they had created. Some of these companies were construction companies that were awarded over-priced projects. An alternative method used to take the town's funds involved paying its alleged employees and paying for services that were never rendered.

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  The Republic of Guatemala, a mountainous country that lies in the Central American isthmus, has an estimated population of 13 million people.
  Guatemala won its independence in 1821, following almost three centuries of Spanish colonial rule.
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