Metro System’s Former Director to Appear in CourtBy Fernando Mares | Wed, 07/06/2022 - 16:23
Mexico City Attorney’s Office has called on former Metro System Director, Florencia Serranía to come to court and declare what she knows regarding the collapse of Line 12 on May 3, 2021, where 26 died and 100 others sustained injuries.
Despite the Claudia Sheinbaum administration’s reluctance, Serranía is set to appear in court after 13 indirect and direct victims of the incident moved for a lawsuit. The objective of this witness summons is that Serranía declares all the information she knows regarding maintenance works and operation of Line 12, as well as the line’s collapse between the Olivos and Tezonco stations.
Serranía is not the only public officer to appear in court: Mexico City’s Supervisory Judge of the Second Chamber for Judicial Management 7 instructed the Public Prosecutor’s Office to summon Joel Ortega, Jorge Gaviño, Oscar González and the current Minister of Public Works, Jesús Esteva. When the hearings are to take place is still unknown.
According to the victims’ lawyer, Teófilo Benítez, these declarations will allow authorities to gain the details needed to further investigate the case. “Now, we will know without anyone to protect [the officials], heard their version of the incidents… there will be no explanation from functionaries to protect the interests of those in charge of the Line and the ones that currently operate it,” Benítez added.
Sheinbaum declared that the appearance of Serranía in Court will not add valuable information, arguing that after a year of investigation, Serranía could not add new insights. The mayor did not comment on why Serranía was not called to court earlier. “Extensive research has been conducted, the Attorney’s Office has done its own assessment,” Sheinbaum added.
In a press conference to report the progress of Line 12’s restoration works, Esteva reported that the city has completed the restoration works in the first section of the line and reinforced columns with carbon fiber. He added that from this month onward, the government will hire more workers, which he believes will allow the works to develop faster. He said he has not been notified of the summons, but is prepared to assist.
Line 12 was built by a consortium consisting of CICSA, ICA and Alstom during Marcelo Ebrard’s term as Mayor of Mexico City. It was inaugurated on October 30, 2012, and temporarily closed from 2014 to 2015, during Miguel Mancera’s term. To date, no one has been arrested for the collapse.