Mexico Hid Data on ´93 Murder, Cardinal Says

Guadalajara Archbishop Had Turned in Conclusions

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GUADALAJARA, Mexico, JUNE 11, 2001 ( Cardinal Juan Sandoval Íñiguez says that Mexican federal authorities concealed the conclusions that he and the Jalisco government handed over to them, in the 1993 murder of the archbishop of Guadalajara.

Cardinal Sandoval explained in statements published by the Notimex agency that on July 27, 1999, when the conclusions on the case were published, only the version of the Office of the Procurator General of the Republic (PGR) was made known.

Cardinal Juan Jesús Posadas Ocampo was gunned down on May 24, 1993, at the Guadalajara international airport. A report last year by the PGR blamed the death on a mix-up among gangs of drug traffickers.

«The conclusions of the government of Jalisco and my own were not published,» Cardinal Sandoval stressed. «They must have eaten them, because they did receive them; they hid them or did not want to make them known.» He said he is convinced the murder was a «state crime.»

The cardinal has brought new information to the attention of the government and to the Vatican.

«We have such elements that, if the authorities wish, they can salvage the case and let the Mexican people know who was or were the killers, and how they took his life,» Cardinal Sandoval added.

The archbishop of Guadalajara said the Church only wants an explanation of the murder.

«We want the memory of a holy man to be clean,» he said of his predecessor, «because they tried to kill him twice: They killed him physically with 14 shots and, morally, arguing that he was a drug trafficker, which is also terrible.»

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