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  • Duarte belongs to the PRI, the ruling party of President Enrique Peña Nieto, and was the governor of the Gulf state — one of the most violent areas of the country.

    Duarte belongs to the PRI, the ruling party of President Enrique Peña Nieto, and was the governor of the Gulf state — one of the most violent areas of the country. | Photo: Efe

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Mexican officials have reportedly linked millions of seized dollars, properties, businesses and bank accounts to the former governor.

Javier Duarte, a former state governor from Mexico's ruling party wanted for embezzlement and organized crime arrived in the country Monday after being extradited from Guatemala, the Mexican government said.

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Duarte, who until last year governed the Gulf coast state of Veracruz for President Enrique Pena Nieto's Institutional Revolutionary Party, is suspected of siphoning off millions of dollars during his tenure. He has denied any wrongdoing.

Wearing handcuffs and a bulletproof vest, Duarte was transferred Monday morning from the military prison where he had been held since his arrest, to Guatemalan Air Force facilities, where he set off for Mexico.

The 43-year-old landed in Mexico City airport a few hours later. Official video footage showed him disembarking from a government plane and being led away by armed guards.

"The extradition procedure of Mr. Duarte de Ochoa was carried out with full respect and observance of his human rights, at all times ensuring due process, in accordance with the applicable bilateral extradition treaty and the domestic law of the Republic of Guatemala," a Mexican official stated.

Elected governor in 2010, he is alleged to have acquired luxury properties in Mexico and abroad, defrauding taxpayers of sums some estimates put in the hundreds of millions of dollars and using shell companies to transfer and hide public funds.

Duarte was arrested in Guatemala in April after more than five months on the run.

A court appearance for the ex-official has yet to be announced.

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