Media Center

Press Release

MACCIH-OAS/UFECIC-MP Team Presents Sixth Case of Integrated Criminal Investigation: “Brother’s Petty Cash”

  November 5, 2018

OEA y Ministerio Público Honduras

The Attorney General’s Office of Honduras today filed a fiscal injunction before the Supreme Court of Justice against Wilfredo Francisco Cerrato Duron, former Secretary of State in Administration and Presidential Financial Management, and Ramón Lobo Sosa, brother of the former President of Honduras Porfirio Lobo, for the alleged crime of fraud and embezzlement of public funds to the detriment of the Public Administration.

The investigation that concluded with today's injunction was conducted by the Integrated Criminal Investigation and Prosecution Team, composed of experts from the Mission to Support the Fight against Corruption and Impunity in Honduras of the Organization of American States (MACCIH-OAS) and prosecutors and investigators from the Special Prosecutor's Unit against Corruption and Impunity of the Public Prosecutor's Office (UFECIC-MP).

The prosecution believes that the defendants in the so-called "caja chica del hermano" (or brother’s petty cash) case created a network to divert public money that was initially intended to defray the security costs of the Presidential House. By this means, according to the investigation, the accused presumably illegally pocketed 8.4 million lempiras (some 350,000 dollars).

The Spokesperson of the MACCIH-OAS and Representative of the Secretary General of the OAS, Luiz Guimarães Marrey, said “This joint action demonstrates once again the commitment of the MACCIH-OAS to continue promoting the fight against corruption through State institutions, in strict compliance with the mandate conferred on us by the Agreement signed on January 19, 2016, between the Government of the Republic of Honduras and the General Secretariat of the OAS. We will continue working.”

The “caja chica del hermano" case is the latest case of integrated criminal investigation filed by the team composed of the MACCIH-OAS and the UFECIC-MP. The previous cases were Red de Diputados, Caja Chica de la Dama, Pacto de Impunidad, Pandora, Aseguramiento de Bienes.


The investigation of the “caja chica del hermano" case began after the Financial Intelligence Unit of the National Banking and Insurance Commission (CNBS) sent a Suspicious Operating Report to the integrated MACCIH-OEA/UFECIC-MP team on January 8, 2018 which allowed for discovery of the following facts: 

  1. On February 1, 2010 by agreement No. 65-2010 issued by the Secretary of State in the Offices of the Interior and Justice, Wilfredo Francisco Cerrato Durón was appointed to the position of Secretary of State in Administration and Presidential Financial Management, a position that he held until 2014. As part of his faculties, on January 21, 2011, he proceeded to open, among others, the following accounts: a) a checking account in the name of Presidential House / Administration for the purpose of paying payroll and b) a checking account in the name of Presidential House/Presidential Honor Guard, with the purpose of covering security expenses, with an initial amount of forty million lempiras.
  1. On the other hand, the accused Ramon Lobo Sosa, in his condition as brother of the then-President of the Republic Porfirio Lobo Sosa, received security from the Presidential Honor Guard and was assigned 11 military units.
  1. As a result of the investigation, it was possible to identify that between 2010 and January 2014, Wilfredo Francisco Cerrato Durón paid at least twelve (12) checks from the checking account on behalf of the Presidential House/Administration; and at least seventy-two (72) checks, at a rate of one hundred thousand lempiras each from the checking account in the name of Presidential House/Presidential Honor Guard: 42 checks to the person identified as protected witness Omega 1; and 42 checks to the person identified as protected witness Alpha 1, totaling eight million four hundred thousand lempiras.
  1. It is important to note that neither of the two beneficiaries Omega 1 and Alpha 1, maintained a labor, commercial or contractual relationship with the State of Honduras within the period investigated, so the issuance in their favor of these checks lacks legal support.
  1. The person in charge of the monthly collection of the checks was Ramon Lobo Sosa, who later ordered the beneficiaries of the checks to endorse them, and then deposited them in his personal checking account. At the moment of ordering the endorsement of the checks, he justified their emission for the expenses of feeding and cleaning of the members of the presidential honor guard that offered security to him, in his condition as the brother of Porfirio Lobo Sosa.
  1. The Military Legal Auditor of the Armed Forces has informed that the party responsible for feeding and clothing these units is the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In the specific case of Ramon Lobo Sosa, the Joint Chiefs of Staff were responsible for providing food and lodging for the personnel that provided security, and if they needed to move to another sector of the country, such personnel were granted travel expenses through the General Administration of the Presidential House, upon request of the Presidential Honor Guard.
  1. The transactions or movements of the account registered in the name of Ramón Lobo Sosa, are numerous and during the dates in which the checks drawn in favor of Alpha 1 and Omega 1 were deposited, the account reflected significant balances of sums of money, so that a mixture of capitals was created, which is produced by adding the funds derived from the commercial activity to which the account holder is dedicated and the funds from the public treasury, through the deposit of the previously referenced at least eighty four checks.
la caja chica del hermano

Reference: E-067/18