Puerto Vallarta councilwoman accuses Mayor of bribing her to vote for budget increase

The Morena political party, which Mexico’s president leads, and their mayor in Puerto Vallarta, Luis Michel, became a national scandal: last Friday, September 30, the City Council session was national news after Councilor Carla Esparza “returned” an envelope with money to the mayor, telling him that his son, Chuy Michel, gave it to her as a bribe to vote in favor of the budget increases requested by the mayor. The scene played out in a public hearing in front of cameras.

“At this moment, and with my fellow witnesses, I hand over an envelope that was given to me supposedly on the Mayor’s behalf by his son Jesús “Chuy” Michel. It was handed to me along with the request that I approve the modifications to the budget”, she expressed in the session that was transmitted by the official channels of the City Council.

The vote was postponed after the exposed bribery attempt. The corruption with which the sons of Mayor Luis Alberto Michel Rodríguez operate, sources from the city council point out, will finally affect the aspirations of the so-called Profe Michel to be Morena’s candidate for the governorship of Jalisco .

Jesús Chuy Michel is joined by Emmanuel Mane, his brother, who was involved in trying to put together a photomontage with a false profile and non-existent tweets from councilor Esparza, to make her declare: “I never said who gave me the envelope, I NEVER knew, and I do NOT hold anyone responsible”; “I clarify: the envelope contained papers and documents I NEVER SAID that it contained money, that envelope did not belong to me and that is why I handed it over to the mayor.”

The political trick at generating fake news went wrong. Chuy Michel circulated the false information on WhatsApp, asking people to spread the manufactured lies about the councilwoman. The clumsiness was evident because included in the receipts of the WhatsApp broadcast was councilor Esparza herself, who immediately pointed out that it was a manufactured account of what happened. “Chuy has already been cornered and before the obvious, he deleted the messages, but the screenshots remained as proof of his lies and that he does interfere in the government.”

The mayor denied knowing anything about the bribe or being part of any plan to bribe the councilwoman for her vote, assuring his children are grown adults and they are responsible for their own actions.

Carla Esparza Quintero -who uses the slogan “I am brave” on social networks- is the only councilwoman with special security protection from the State of Jalisco after several car accidents that were believed to be attempts on her life disguised as an accident and home robberies. After revealing the scheme to bribe her for a vote, the Jalisco Prosecutor’s office issued her a ‘Life Pulse’ device, a wearable panic button to connect her directly to the police in an emergency.

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