Mexican church and police officials are investigating whether a Roman Catholic priest in the central state of Hidalgo accepted narco-trafficking dollars to fund the expansion and modernization of a church.
The illicit funds don’t appear to have come from any run-of-the-mill trafficker but rather the head of one of the most violent cartels, Los Zetas. The Federal Attorney General’s Office of Mexico is trying to determine if Heriberto Lazcano, head of Los Zetas, funded the chapel in the village of Tezontle to honor Pope John Paul II. His name appears on the dedication plaque reading: “Donated by Heriberto Loazcano Lazcano, Lord, hear my prayer.”
The Catholic Church has suspended the unidentified priests while it also conducts their own investigation. A Catholic Church spokesman has affirmed the Church’s position that a priest cannot accept ‘dirty’ money even if it’s for a good cause.