Criminal charges against Argentina’s most powerful union boss are beginning to pile up in the Comodoro Py courthouse in Buenos Aires.
Hugo Moyano and his son Pablo, the current head of the Teamsters Union, were accused this week of fraud and racketeering against the Independiente football club, of which Moyano senior is president.
“I’ve always stood by the workers, this is why they’re going after me”, a defensive Moyano told Crónica TV on Thursday.
“There is nothing on me. If I’ve committed a crime that means I have to go to jail, let it be in a cell next to (President Mauricio) Macri’s father (Franco),” he said.
The unions and some sectors of the opposition claim that the government is persecuting unions in order to play a stronger hand in ongoing collective wage bargaining negotiations.
“Now that they (the people in the current government) have power, they think they can take on the world. They think that they own everything. Things aren’t right, the situation isn’t right, especially for workers. They want to distract attention away from the problems we’re facing by putting attention on Moyano”, he said, referring to himself.
He also took aim at government-aligned lawmaker Graciela Ocaña whom he accused of “doing nothing” in the 25 years in which “we have paid her salary” as a public servant.
Ocaña provided evidence to the courts in 2011 which saw Moyano charged with money laundering and embezzlement of funds belonging to the Teamsters union’s health care fund.
The lawmaker claims the health care funds were diverted to businesses linked to the Moyano family.
“We’re going to provide new evidence and expand the complaint (against Moyano) for money laundering, because there is evidently a diversion of funds”, she said on Thursday, responding to Moyano's attacks.