Alfonso Portillo, who served as the president of Guatemala from 2000 to 2004, was recently indicted in a New York court on charges that he embezzled tens of millions of public dollars while he was in office. The indictment also accuses Portillo of washing the stolen money using foreign and local banks.
"Portillo embezzled money from the Guatemalan government and made a number of fraudulent transactions through CHN and other Guatemalan banks to enrich himself and his co-conspirators," the indictment reads.
The Grand Jury specifically alleges, among various other charges, that Portillo stole $1.5 million
in donations by the Taiwanese government from a program called "Libraries for Peace" and diverted the money to accounts belonging to friends and family. His coconspirators have not been identified, but the indictment says that the national mortgage bank Credito Hipotecario Nacional (CHN) and a Guatemalan company called Confia were used to help wash a lot of the money.
Portillo is facing charges in both Guatemalan and United States courts. He originally won office by promising redistribution of wealth, but fled the country shortly after his four-year term ended.