MEXICO – Mexico announced on Monday that it will auction the mansion of Chinese businessman and drug dealer Zhenli Ye Gon in August.
The luxurious house has been valued at around $5 million and the proceeds from the sale will go to struggling municipalities in the country, according to the government.
“Only one administrative requirement is missing for the public ministry to register it in the public registry of the property and to be able to sell it in two or three weeks,” said Ricardo Rodriguez, head of Mexico’s property administration and disposal service.
He added that the house is located in the exclusive neighborhood of Bosque de Las Lomas in Mexico City and has a plot of 1,218 square meters.
Images of the house were shown at a press conference, including its garden, bathrooms, lift, spacious rooms and kitchen.
The sale will be part of a number of auctions carried out by the government of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador with the objective of selling goods seized from organized crime to finance social programs.
In 2007 Mexican authorities found $206 million in cash, 17 million pesos (around $900,000) and 200,000 euros at the mansion.
Rodriguez said the money was given to the Judicial Power of the Federation, the Attorney General’s Office and to the Ministry of Health.
Another property seized from Zhenli, in the central State of Mexico and worth around $9.5 million, was acquired in 2014 by the government of that state.
Zhenli was extradited on 18 October, 2016 to Mexico from the United States on allegations of drug trafficking after almost a decade.
The former owner of Mexican pharmaceutical Unimed Pharm Chem accused the then Secretary of Labor Javier Lozano of forcing him to hide illegal money that allegedly belonged to the ruling National Action Party and had served to finance the electoral campaign of the President Felipe Calderon.
Mexican authorities said he was the leader of an organization dedicated to the manufacture of pseudoephedrine, a chemical precursor, and the seizure was considered the biggest blow in Mexico against the trafficking of methamphetamines in the country.
Rodriguez said that the Mexican government had raised around $540,000 in the auction of jewels seized from drug trafficking held this weekend, which had 70 participants.
The item with the highest starting price of $155,050, a Piaget men’s watch in 18K white gold with 49 diamonds, was declared void because there were no bidders.
Rodriguez added that the resources obtained will be used to repair rural roads in the Sierra de Michoacan region.
On Feb. 24, the Mexican Government auctioned vehicles, armored vans and motorcycles, many of them belonging to the Presidential General Staff, a protection body dissolved by the president.
On May 26, there was an auction of luxury cars, and on June 23, a sale of real estate seized from drug trafficking.