Supreme Court Justice President Arturo Zaldívar. Photo: Google

By KELIN DILLON

On Monday, Jan. 10, relatives of Mexico’s Attorney General (FGR) Alejandro Gertz Manero plead their case before the president of the Supreme Court Justice (SCJN), begging for the release of their 68-year-old mother, Gertz’s niece, who the Attorney General’s Office had imprisoned for the supposed negligent homicide of her father and Gertz’s blood brother, who died in the ABC Medical Center of a heart attack in 2015 at the age of 82.

Gertz’s move to jail his own niece, Alejandra Cuevas Morán, for his elderly brother’s death has caught major criticism, including repeated public protest from other relatives, with accusations mounting about his blatant abuse of power. The attorney general’s reputation has similarly been marred by a number of other recent scandals, including his purported illegal enrichment, plagiarism, and his autumnal revenge quest against Mexico’s leading scientists and academics.

Continuing his public outcry against his mother’s wrongful 15-month long imprisonment without trial in the Santa Martha Acatitla prison, Cuevas Morán’s son Alonso Castillo Cuevas unexpectedly showed up at SCJN President Arturo Zaldívar’s Monday night conference at Mexico City’s Ibero-American University, taking the floor at the event’s end to plead his mother’s case alongside his sister, Ana Paula.

The conference subsequently took a dramatic turn as Ana Paula dropped to her knees to beg with Zaldívar through impassioned screams. 

“My mother did nothing! I am a mother of three children and I’m terrified!” cried Ana Paula.

“When Alejandro Gertz Manero persecutes you, the law is extinguished. We are demanding justice, Minister, from you, from your colleagues. To leave this case in silence is killing us,” Alonso added during his own plea to the SCJN president.

Zaldívar had previously ordered an investigation by the Plenary of the Court into the issue, which eventually saw Gertz’s brother’s widow released from prison in September 2021, though her daughter and the Castillo Cuevas’ mother remains in detention with apparently no progress forward in resolving the case according to the family’s pleas.

“More than 60 days have passed and the only thing we have received from the court is an absolute silence that kills us, like the cell that suffocates my mother,” said Alonso. 

“Do not allow Gertz Manero, who was my grandmother’s brother-in-law for 52 years, to exterminate the SCJN and end the legacy of all the ministers by this absolute power that the FGR has,” Alonso went on to say.

For his part, Zaldívar remained calm and refused to debate the case in a public forum considering it is still pending in court, but expressed his sympathies to the family and said they had “every right” to express themselves.

“It will be resolved by the Plenary of the Court, based on the evidence in the file, without any pressure or consideration other than that which is in accordance with the right to the constitution, and human rights as we always do,” said Zaldívar.

“I am very sorry for the situation that you are suffering, but it is not the responsibility of the court, not even the SCJN. It is a matter that has been processed in other ways, and what we seek to do is to give clarity beyond any doubt,” Zaldívar went on to say, mentioning how other cases with even more political pressure than this had been resolved in Mexico’s court system independently from outside influence. “I really understand your pain, your suffering and despair.”

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