Ex-Honduras police chief acquitted of money laundering

February 2, 2022 GMT

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras (AP) — A judge in Honduras acquitted a former head of the National Police Wednesday, two years after he was arrested on charges of money laundering.

The judge ordered Leonel Sauceda’s immediate release.

Sauceda and his wife were arrested in February 2020 in Tegucigalpa. She was released months later, but Sauceda remained in jail awaiting trial.

Sauceda began his career with the National Police in 1992 and was appointed head of police just two weeks before his arrest.

According to investigators, there was no accounting for 13 bank accounts and 13.8 million lempiras, or roughly $560,000, that Sauceda had in his name between 2006 and 2017. They say his wife also had 10 bank accounts with roughly 2.7 million lempiras, or $110,000, for which the origin couldn’t be traced.

After his acquittal, Sauceda said “I am going to continue fighting to do the right thing.”