June 29, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Jorge Serrano Limón, the founder of Mexico’s largest pro-life organization, has been acquitted in a criminal case promoted by pro-abortion groups that has dogged him for almost eight years.
The campaign against Serrano included at least one attempt to arrest him in 2011, which he narrowly escaped, when he was tipped off about the warrant against him and managed to take legal recourse in time to avoid its execution.
Jorge Serrano Limón was first accused by pro-abortion groups of malfeasance in 2004 after receiving a grant for the National Pro-Life Committee (Comité Nacional Provida), which uses mobile units to provide free ultrasounds to women considering abortions, and offers financial and moral support to help them keep their children. Some of the expenses were deemed unauthorized, and the committee was required to return a part of the funds.
In 2009 Serrano was accused again, this time of criminal fraud for using grant money to purchase monitors, cables, and other accompanying expenses for the ultrasound equipment, for which the grant had been given. Serrano contended that the other equipment and expenses were included in the grants for the ultrasound units, while prosecutors claimed they were not.
This April, Serrano was convicted by a lower court and sentenced to four years in prison, and required to pay restitution and fines of more than 2.5 million pesos (approximately $186,000 U.S.), a decision he predicted would be overturned on appeal.
On Tuesday, appellate judge Ricardo Paredes nullified the sentence completely in a decision that cannot be appealed and ordered the cessation of all other legal actions against Serrano related to the case.
“A manipulated trial was conducted in which they did not take any of the evidence into account, and a sentence was declared of four years in prison and a payment of 2,500,000 pesos,” wrote Serrano in a public statement on the case, which he called “an attack that lasted almost 8 years in which the media united to discredit me.”
“Magistrate Ricardo Paredes reviewed the case, recognized the anomalies, took the evidence into account, and declared that the correct use of the funds had been proven, for which he issued a sentence in my favor. This sentence is the final sentence. No more can be done with respect to it, it is unassailable,” wrote Serrano Limón.
“We must not forget that these attacks made on my person were not against me, but against the marvelous work of Christ, which are the Women’s Help Centers and the strategies of rescuing lives from abortion,” he added, thanking supporters “for all of their prayers,” and requesting “that we pray for those people who sought to do us damage so that our Lord might bless them, as well as your prayers to give thanks to the Virgin for her protection.”
To visit the website of the National Pro-Life Committee: http://provida.org.mx.
To e-mail the National Pro-Life Committee: email@example.com.