US seeks help to investigate corruption in Central America

The United States announced on Friday the creation of an email address to receive complaints with information that helps fight corruption in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, a key component to address what the government considers one of the causes of the migration of those countries to the north.

“Corruption and impunity in the region weaken democracy, encourage migration and represent a threat to national security,” said Kenneth Polite Jr., undersecretary of Justice for the criminal area. “They support criminal organizations and transnational crimes,” he added.

The Justice Department initiative is part of the anti-corruption policy that the government of President Joe Biden has promoted since taking office in January, which it considers a priority.

The United States not only seeks to combat the acts of corruption in Central America but also to make it clear that it is not willing to be fertile ground to facilitate them through the use of its financial system or the purchase of properties or other assets with money from activities. illicit in those countries.

Before coming to power, Biden said in his political campaign that he would focus on the causes that lead migrants to leave their countries in search of a better future, including corruption, poverty and lack of economic opportunities.

In his first months in office, Biden has seen thousands of migrants arrive at the southern border with Mexico, which has caused significant challenges for his government.

In June, an anti-corruption task force was created that will now review the information received through the email address [email protected].

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Through this channel, the US government aspires to obtain the most detailed information possible in order to investigate acts of corruption between the countries of the so-called Northern Triangle and the United States.

Polite explained that what is sought is that anyone dares to make complaints with information about corrupt actors in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras who have violated US laws or have mobilized illicit capital in or through the United States.

Complaints can be written in English or Spanish.

After determining whether this country has jurisdiction, the anti-corruption task force will begin investigations and the Department of Justice will sue those allegedly responsible in court. Where appropriate, asset seizures will also be made and stolen assets will be returned to the countries, Justice Department officials said.

It is a joint effort in which other agencies are also involved, such as the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security and the anti-drug agency DEA.

For years, the United States has denounced in federal courts officials from around the world, drug traffickers and businessmen involved in acts of corruption.

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