25 March 2011

Carpinteyro cleared of breaking privacy laws

Former top SCT officially had been accused of illegally taping boss' phone, leaking conversations to media

By Bronson Pettitt

Mexico Weekly / March 25, 2011

On Thursday, a federal judge ruled there is not enough evidence to charge Purificación Carpinteyro of breaking privacy laws by leaking illegally tapped phone conversations of her former boss in 2009.

“I'm exonerated and the scandal that has damaged my credibility [is over],” Carpinteyro said Friday in a radio interview with MVS News anchor Carmen Aristegui.

Carpinteyro served as deputy secretary at the Communications and Transportation Secretariat (SCT) from September 2008 to February 2009. She was fired two years ago amid revelations of a series of phone conversations in which then-SCT chief Luis Téllez spoke harshly of federal government officials and accused a former president of stealing billions of pesos.

Alejandro Caballero, a judge at a Mexico City prison, also canceled an arrest warrant issued against Carpinteyro last year, El Universal reported.

On March 22, 2010, a federal judge ordered a criminal investigation over Carpinteyro's alleged role in leaking the phone conversations.

“The PGR is probably going to fight this decision,” Carpinteyro said Friday in an interview with Ciro Gómez Leyva on Radio Fórmula.

Last month, an important part of the case against Carpinteyro wherein the Mexico City Attorney General's Office determined she had not written a letter attempting to blackmail Téllez, threatening to leak the phone conversations to the press.

In one of the leaked phone conversations, Téllez could be heard dropping President Calderón's name to manipulate conflicts between the SCT and the Federal Telecommunications Commission, El Universal reported back in 2009.

However, the conversation that generated the most attention was one in which Téllez said former President Carlos Salinas de Gortari “stole half of the secret presidential fund,” referring to a discretionary presidential fund.

The fund was eliminated at the end of former President Ernesto Zedillo's term (1994-2000).

Téllez eventually confirmed the authenticity of the conversations, initially broadcast by Aristegui and published by the online magazine Reporte Índigo in early 2009.

As a result of the leaked phone conversations, Téllez was forced to resign from his Cabinet post, becoming an adviser to President Calderón. He is currently the head of the Mexican Stock Exchange.


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