Ex-President absolved of Corruption.
EX-PRESIDENT ABSOLVED OF CORRUPTION. A court has absolved former President Alfonso Portillo of charges that he stole $15 million from the Defense Dept, reports AP (May 11, 2011). A panel of judges voted 2-1 to absolve Portillo and his former ministers of finance and defense. He remains in prison because he faces an extradition request from the US. He is charged in a New York federal court with embezzling $1.5 million in foreign donations intended to buy school library books in Guatemala. He allegedly endorsed checks drawn from a New York bank and deposited them in a Miami account. After leaving office in 2004, Portillo fled to Mexico where he received a work visa and was a financial adviser for a construction materials company. He was extradited from Mexico to Guatemala in 2008 to face the embezzlement charges at home and remained free until he was arrested on Jan. 26, 2010 on the U.S. extradition request. He was captured at a beach preparing to flee Guatemala by boat.