• Alleged Embezzlement of Taiwan Funds Spurs Arrest of Former President


    SAN SALVADOR, April 30, 2014 (AFP) – Prosecutors in El Salvador on Wednesday sought the arrest of former president Francisco Flores for the alleged misappropriation of $5.3 million donated by Taiwan.

    Attorney General Luis Martinez told broadcaster TCS that Flores, whose whereabouts are unknown, is wanted for embezzlement, illicit enrichment and disobedience.

    “There was illicit enrichment of about 5.3 million,” Martinez said without specifying when Flores allegedly handled the funds.

    Documents seeking his arrest have been file with a court in the capital San Salvador.

    Martinez said a probe had traced Flores to banks in the US city of Miami, as well as in Costa Rica and the Bahamas.

    “It was a very difficult case to investigate,” Martinez added, saying the probe was still ongoing.

    In power between 1999 and 2004, Flores was investigated both by Congress and the attorney general’s office in the wake of allegations by President Mauricio Funes that Flores received $10 million in donations from Taiwan without accounting for them.

    Funes claimed Taipei donated the money to El Salvador in the waning months of Flores’ presidency, between 2003 and 2004.

    Flores has said he accepted the money but did nothing inappropriate, passing it on through the proper channels.

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