As of yesterday, Alejandro Maldonado Aguirre is the new president of Guatemala, following the abrupt resignation of Otto Perez Molina. Mr. Perez Molina now faces an arrest warrant on charges of corruption for conspiring with or – at the very least – having knowledge of the existence of criminal organizations within the country.
The underlying corruption investigation was carried out by local prosecutors and the U.N. Commission, and allegedly involves a scheme in which importers allegedly paid bribes to avoid or reduce import duties and obtain benefits from Guatemala’s customs agency. The state was believed to have been defrauded for millions of dollars.
At this time, it is unlikely that this succession will have an immediate effect on foreign assets held in Guatemala.
Mr. Maldonado Aguirre will likely remain in office until the winner of the upcoming elections is sworn in on January 14, 2016.
Client Alert 2015-248