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Former Mexico Officials Arrested

October 5, 1999

MEXICO CITY (AP) _ Federal officials have arrested three former state officials and a union leader accused of covering up evidence linking a fugitive former governor with drug trafficking.

The men arrested Saturday worked for the attorney general’s office of Quintana Roo state during the administration of Gov. Mario Villanueva, who disappeared in April days before his six-year term ended.

U.S. and Mexican investigators have been probing official links to drug trafficking in the Caribbean coast state famed for tourist resorts such as Cancun.

The federal attorney general’s office on Monday identified the three as Luis Alonso Andres Peraza Gonzalez, former state deputy attorney general, and two lower-ranking former officials, Armando Chan Denis and Marco Antonio Serrano y Cob. A tourism union official, Damaso Hernandez Marin also was arrested.

Peraza Gonzalez was arrested on suspicion of violating laws against organized crime, intimidation and falsification of documents. Hernandez Marin is suspected of intimidation. Chan and Serrano were accused of making false statements. All were also accused of crimes against the administration of justice.

The attorney general’s office said the former officials used their posts to intimidate witnesses, falsify transcripts of testimony and offer bribes to hide or downplay evidence linking Villanueva with drug traffickers.

On Aug. 15, police arrested a former Quintana Roo state police commander, Oscar Benjamin Garcia Davila, on charges of drug dealing and organized crime

Federal prosecutors have said Garcia Davila served as a liaison between drug traffickers and Villanueva.

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