By KELIN DILLON
Mexico’s Attorney General of the Republic (FGR) Alejandro Gertz Manero was accused of plagiarising paragraphs of his work from others on Wednesday, July 7, taking portions of texts word-for-word, dating back as far as 1939.
Gertz reportedly used the verbatim work of five different authors to gain admission to the third level of the National System of Investigators (SNI), part of the National Council of Science and Technology (Conacyt).
A multitude of SNI members demanded that the organization’s Board of Honor look further into the plagiarism accusation, which the investigators say should warrant Gertz’s resignation from his post at the SNI.
Likewise, they say Conacyt is bound to hold up their new regulation of “strict policy of zero tolerance for corruption,” created during the administration of current Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO).
Others pointed out that Gertz was admitted to the SNI under irregular pretenses, since the official does not have the academic standing usually required to enter the system, especially at such a high level.
Antonio Lazcano, scientist and member of El Colegio Nacional, said the plagiarism accusations are “irrefutable proof that Dr. Gertz Manero does not deserve to be a member of the SNI III,” and that he should resign “out of modesty,” though he noted “I do not know if he wants to give up an academic career that he has not had.”
“His admission is an insult to all researchers who do an extraordinarily careful job,” continued Lazcano, saying Gertz does not have the academic or moral qualities to belong to such an organization.
The SIN and Conacyt will now decide whether to take action against the allegations or not, with critics saying a minor response would only discredit the reputation and ethics of the institution.
Gertz had come under public fire in the previous month of June for allegedly using his influence to strongarm money out of his deceased brother’s family, and likewise wrongfully throwing those same nieces in jail.