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General Information

GDP USD1160.91bn (World ranking 15, World Bank 2013)
Population 122 million (World ranking 11, World Bank 2013)
Form of state Federal Republic
Head of government Enrique PENA NIETO (PRI)
Next elections 2015, presidential

 

CURRENT LOCAL TIME

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PRODUCTS IN MEXICO

Data Protection

Contribution Details Carlos Valencia

Partner

Law and Regulations

The Federal Law on Protection of Personal Data held by Private Parties (Ley Federal de Protection de Dates Personals en Possession de Particulars) (the “Law”) was enacted and entered into force on 6 July 2010.

The Executive Branch issued (i) the Regulations to the Law (Reglamento de la Ley Federal de Possession de Dates en Possession de Particulars) on 21 December 2011 (the “Regulations”), which entered into force on December 22, 2011, (ii) the Privacy Notice Guidelines on

January 17, 2013 (the “Guidelines”) which will enter into force on 18 April 2013, and

(iii) the Parameters for Mandatory Self-Regulation on 17 January 2013 (the “Parameters”) which entered into force on 18 January 2013. References to the Law throughout this document include the Regulations, the Guidelines and the Parameters.

The Law applies to personal data and sensitive personal data (see definitions below):

(i) processed in a facility of the data controller located in Mexican territory; (ii) processed in any facility regardless of its location if the processing is performed on behalf of a Mexican data controller; (iii) where the Law and the Regulations are applicable as a consequence of Mexico’s adherence to an international convention (even where the data user is not located in Mexico);

or (iv) where the data controller is not located in Mexican territory but uses means located in Mexico to process personal data located abroad. However, when personal data is only in transit through, and is not processed in, Mexico, the Law does not apply.

The Law is limited in its application to the private sector, and does not apply to the government.

Definition of Personal Data

Personal Data” means any information concerning an identified or identifiable individual. Unless otherwise noted in this document, personal data includes sensitive personal data.

Definition of sensitive Personal Data

Sensitive Personal Data” means personal data touching on the most intimate areas of the data subject’s life, or data the misuse of which may lead to discrimination or serious risk to the data subject. Specifically, the definition includes data which may reveal items such as racial or ethnic origin, present or future health status, genetic information, religious, philosophical or moral beliefs, union affiliation, political views, and sexual orientation.

National Data Protection Authority

The Federal Institute for Access of Information and Data Protection (Institute Federal de Access a la Information y Protection de Dates (IFAI )) (“IFAI”) and the Ministry of Economy (Secretariat de Economies’).

Registration

Not required.

Data Protection Officers

All data controllers are required by Law to designate a personal data officer or department ( jointly hereinafter referred to as the “Data Protection Officer”) to handle requests from any data subjects (called “Data Owners”) exercising their rights under the Law. Data

Protection Officers are also required to promote the protection of Personal Data within their organizations.

Data controllers located outside Mexico who process personal data of Mexican data subjects abroad must appoint a representative or set up a sufficient alternative mechanism to comply with all aspects of the Law (e.g. comply with “ARCO” rights discussed below).

Collection and Processing

The term “processing” is broadly defined to include the procurement, use, access, management, transfer, disposal, disclosure or storage of personal data of an identified or identifiable individual by any means

Data subjects are entitled to a reasonable expectation of privacy in the processing of their personal data, – i.e. reliance on the assumption that the personal data provided by the data subject will be treated as agreed upon by the parties (in the privacy notice or otherwise) and in compliance with the Law.

To process personal data, data controllers must provide a privacy notice (Avise de

Privacidad) (the “Privacy Notice”), which must be made available to a data subject prior to

the collection and processing of his or her personal data. The Privacy Notice may be provided

to data subjects in printed, digital, visual or audio formats, or any other technology.

The Privacy Notice must contain: (i) the identity and domicile of the data controller collecting the data; (ii) the purposes of the data processing; (iii) the options and means offered by

the data controller to data subjects to limit the use or disclosure of data; (iv) the means for

exercising rights of access, correction, cancellation or objection in accordance with the provisions of the Law; (v) where appropriate, the types of data transfers to be made; and (vi) the procedure and means by which the data controller will notify the data subjects of

changes to the Privacy Notice. For transfers, the Privacy Notice must contain the name of the transfer or the person to whom the information is transferred.

The Guidelines consider three forms of privacy notice: comprehensive, simplified and short- form, depending on whether the data is personally obtained from the data subject, the data

is obtained directly or indirectly from the data subject or the space to obtain data is minimal or limited (where the space allotted for the gathering of personal data or the Privacy Notice is also minimal or limited), respectively. Each of these forms must meet specific disclosure

requirements. The Privacy Notice must be drafted in simple, clear and comprehensible terms, contain all necessary information specified above, and be available in Spanish. The Privacy Notice must be made available to the data subject prior to the collection of the data, at first contact if obtained indirectly or prior to their use when obtained indirectly and no contact

is required with the data subject. There are some exceptions to the requirement to provide a subsequent Privacy Notice, such as when the data will be used for scientific, statistical

or historical purposes. The data controller has the burden of proof to show that the Privacy

Notice was provided.

Personal data must be collected and processed in a lawful manner, in accordance with the

provisions of the Law and Regulations, and may not be obtained through deceptive means.

Consent is required for all processing of personal data, except as otherwise provided by the Law. Implicit consent (notice and opt out) applies to the processing of personal data. Express consent (notice and opt in) applies to the processing of financial or asset data and Sensitive personal data, unless an exception applies. With respect to personal data, consent may be communicated verbally, in writing, by electronic or optical means, via any other technology, or by any other unmistakable indications. However, a Data Controller must obtain express written consent from the data subject for any processing of Sensitive Personal Data; written consent may be obtained through the data subject’s written signature, electronic signature, or any other authentication mechanism set up for such purpose.

Further, databases containing sensitive personal data may not be created unless justified

by legitimate, concrete and consistent purposes, in furtherance of the explicit objectives or activities pursued by the data controller.

Exceptions to the consent requirement for processing of personal data, including sensitive personal data, apply where: (i) exempted by other legislation; (ii) the data is contained in publicly available sources; (iii) the identity of the data subject has been disassociated from the data; (iv) processing is for the purpose of discharging obligations under a pre-existing relationship between the data subject and the data controller; (v) there is an emergency situation that could potentially harm an individual with regard to his person or property;

(vi) processing is essential for medical attention, prevention, diagnosis, health care delivery,

medical treatment or health services management, where the data subject is unable to give

consent in the manner established by the General Health Law (Ley General de Salud) and

other applicable laws, and said processing is carried out by a person subject to a duty of professional secrecy or an equivalent obligation; or (vii) pursuant to resolution issued by a competent authority.

Processing of personal data must be limited to the fulfillment of the specific purposes set out in the Privacy Notice. If the personal data is used for a purpose not identified in the Privacy Notice, consent of the data subject is required anew.

Databases containing sensitive personal Data may be created only: (i) where necessary to comply with a legal requirement; (ii) where justified for purposes of national security, public order, public health, or for the protection of third party rights; or (iii) when the data controller is compelled to create it for a legitimate and specific purposes.

The data controller must ensure that Personal Data contained in databases are relevant, correct and up to date for the purposes for which they has been collected. When the personal data are no longer necessary for the fulfillment of the objectives set forth in the Privacy Notice and applicable laws, they must be eliminated.

The Data Controller must also, among other things, implement privacy policies and mandatory privacy programs, set up supervisory systems, update and inform its personnel about matters regarding protection of Personal Data, and set up procedures to receive and process complaints and resolve questions from data subjects.

Transfer

The data controller may freely transfer personal data to domestic or foreign third parties, if the Privacy Notice so provides and the data subject has not opted out. Details regarding the transfers (recipient of the personal data, purposes of the transfer, etc.) of personal data must be provided under the Privacy Notice.

Any third party receiving personal data assumes the same obligations as the data controller that transferred the personal data. Except for disclosures to data processors, personal data may only be transferred for the purposes authorized by the data subject’s consent to the Privacy Notice, which must be opt out or opt in depending on whether the information is personal data or sensitive personal data, respectively.

Domestic or international transfers of personal data may be carried out without the consent of the data subject where: (i) the transfer is pursuant to a law or treaty to which Mexico is party; (ii) the transfer is necessary for medical diagnosis or prevention, health care delivery, medical treatment or health services management; (iii) the transfer is made to the holding company, subsidiaries or affiliates under the common control of the data controller, or to a parent company or any company of the same group as the data controller, operating under the same internal processes and policies; (iv) the transfer is necessary by virtue of a contract executed or to be executed between the data controller and a third party in the interest of the data subject; (v) where the transfer is necessary or legally required to safeguard public interest or for the administration of justice; (vi) where the transfer is necessary for the recognition, exercise or

defense of a right in a judicial proceeding; and (vii) where the transfer is necessary to maintain or comply with an obligation binding on the data controller and the data subject.

The Regulations distinguish between domestic and international transfers of personal data. For international transfers of personal data, the third party receiving the personal data must enter into an agreement or other instrument with the data controller to ensure the lawful processing of the personal data in compliance with the Law. The transfer of personal data between or among related corporate entities is allowed for specific purposes as long as those purposes

are mentioned and disclosed to the data subject in the Privacy Notice. If the personal data is intended to be used for purposes other than those indicated in the Privacy Notice, then express consent must be obtained from the data subject anew.

Security

All responsible parties that process personal data must establish and maintain physical, technical and administrative security measures designed to protect personal data from

damage, loss, alteration, destruction or unauthorized use, access or processing. Data processors may not adopt security measures with respect to personal data that they process on behalf of

a data controller that are inferior to those which the processor has in place to manage its own information. The sufficiency of the security measures will be assessed in relation to the risk involved, potential consequences for data subjects, sensitivity of the data, and technological developments. The Regulations set out criteria that must be considered by the data controller in determining the appropriate security measures and actions to protect the Personal data, and require data controllers to periodically review and update their security measures. The IFAI may also issue non-binding recommendations to data controllers for securing personal data when the data controller’s security measures are insufficient or may put the personal data in risk.

Data controllers or third parties involved in any stage of personal data processing must maintain the confidentiality of the data, and this obligation continues even after the end of any relationship with the data subject or with the data controller.

Any third party who is in charge of securing personal data on behalf of the data controller (“Third Party”) is subject to the same obligations as the data controller to protect the data. The Third Party shall; (i) process the personal data only in accordance with the instructions of and purposes indicated the data controller; (ii) set up security measures to protect the personal data; (iii) keep the personal data confidential; (iv) eliminate the personal data once the legal relationship between the data controller and the third party is terminated; and (v) refrain from transferring personal data, except where (a) the data controller instructs it to do so; (b) the transfer is made to a subcontractor; or (c) the personal data is requested by an authority.

Breach Notification

Security breaches occurring at any stage of processing that materially affect property or Sensitive personal data must be promptly reported by the data controller to the data subject, so that the data subject can take appropriate action to defend his or her rights.

The Regulations provide that breach notification must include at least the following information; (i) a description of the issue; (ii) the personal data that was exposed to the security breach, (iii) recommended actions to the data subject on how to protect his/her own

interests and to secure the personal data; (iv) the corrective actions that the data controller will take immediately, and (v) the process pursuant to which the data subject may obtain additional information regarding the data breach, and any information mentioned in the notice to protect his/her interests, the actions to be taken by the data controller to mitigate any harm or damage and the recommendations of the data controller to the data subject on how to mitigate the

effect of the breach.

Enforcement

The provisions of the Law are mandatory, and apply to data controllers and any other person processing personal data. the ifai may act ex-officio or in response to complaints regarding violations of the law. if any breach of the law or the regulations is alleged, the IFAI may perform on site inspections at the data controller’s facilities to verify compliance with the Law. Inspections may last up to 180 days.

Data subjects can enforce their access, correction, cancellation and objection rights (“ARCO Rights”) via the IFAI and ultimately the court system.

Violations of the Law may result in either monetary penalties or imprisonment.

■     The IFAI may impose monetary fines from 100 to 320,000 times the Mexico City minimum wage (approximately US$480 to US$1,534,275, based upon an exchange rate of MxP$13 per US$1). With regard to violations committed concerning the processing of sensitive personal data, sanctions may be increased up to double these amounts.

■     Three months to three years imprisonment may be imposed on any person authorized to process personal data who, for profit, causes a security breach affecting the databases under its custody. Penalties are doubled for sensitive personal data.

■     Six months to five years imprisonment may be imposed on any person who, with the aim of obtaining unlawful profit, processes personal data deceitfully, taking advantage of an error of the data subject or a person authorized to transmit such data. Penalties are doubled for sensitive personal data.

Data controllers may adopt self regulation mechanisms, such as codes, policies, rules and, standards, or become part of incorporated or unincorporated self-regulatory bodies to support their compliance with the provisions of the Law; these self-regulation standards become binding on Data Controllers and provide prima facie evidence that the Data Controller is in compliance with the Law.

The implementation of the self-regulation mechanisms is regulated at length by the Parameters. The Parameters intend to foster compliance by data controllers with the Regulations, and incentivize the data controllers to apply for certification by the IFAI or other certifying organisms. The Parameters set forth the components that, at a minimum, must be addressed in any self-regulatory mechanism, including, scope, duration, internal updating mechanisms, ARCO rights enforcement, alternate dispute resolution, and form agreements. The Parameters also address the certification system.

Electronic Marketing

Email marketing constitutes the processing of persona data and is subject to the Privacy Notice and opt-out consent requirements of the Law.

Online Privacy (including cookies and Location Data)

The Guidelines which address the use of cookies, web-beacons and other analogous technologies, require that when a data controller uses online tracking mechanisms that permit the automatic collection of personal data, the Privacy Notice must include; a prominent warning to the data subject of the use of such technologies; the fact that personal data is being gathered; and the option to disable such means (unless they are necessary for technical reasons). The notice must also specify the type of personal data being gathered and the purpose.

However, an IP address alone is not likely to rise to the level of personal data under the Law.

(Abstract: The Federal Criminal Code was published on August 14, 1931 and entered into force on September 17, 1931.There are a set of provisions regarding criminalization of the acts of corruption in this Code.)

(In Spanish)

CÓDIGO PENAL FEDERAL

CAPITULO IX Tráfico de Influencia

Artículo 221.- Comete el delito de tráfico de influencia:

I.- El servidor público que por sí o por interpósita persona promueva o gestione la tramitación o resolución ilícita de negocios públicos ajenos a las responsabilidades inherentes a su empleo, cargo o comisión, y

II.- Cualquier persona que promueva la conducta ilícita del servidor público o se preste a la promoción o gestión a que hace referencia la fracción anterior.

III.- El servidor público que por sí, o por interpósita persona indebidamente, solicite o promueva cualquier resolución o la realización de cualquier acto materia del empleo, cargo o comisión de otro servidor público, que produzca beneficios económicos para sí o para cualquiera de las personas a que hace referencia la primera fracción del artículo 220 de este Código.

Al que cometa el delito de tráfico de influencia, se le impondrán de dos años a seis años de prisión, multa de treinta a trescientas veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal en el momento de cometerse el delito y destitución e inhabilitación de dos años a seis años para desempeñar otro empleo, cargo o comisión públicos.

CAPITULO X Cohecho

Artículo 222.- Cometen el delito de cohecho:

I.- El servidor público que por sí, o por interpósita persona solicite o reciba indebidamente para sí o para otro, dinero o cualquiera otra dádiva, o acepte una promesa, para hacer o dejar de hacer algo justo o injusto relacionado con sus funciones, y

II.- El que de manera espontánea dé u ofrezca dinero o cualquier otra dádiva a alguna de las personas que se mencionan en la fracción anterior, para que cualquier servidor público haga u omita un acto justo o injusto relacionado con sus funciones.

Al que comete el delito de cohecho se le impondrán las siguiente sanciones:

Cuando la cantidad o el valor de la dádiva o promesa no exceda del equivalente de quinientas veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal en el momento de cometerse el delito, o no sea valuable, se impondrán de tres meses a dos años de prisión, de treinta a trescientos días multa y destitución e inhabilitación de tres meses a dos años para desempeñar otro empleo, cargo o comisión públicos.

Cuando la cantidad o el valor de la dádiva, promesa o prestación exceda de quinientas veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal en el momento de cometerse el delito, se impondrán de dos a catorce años de prisión, de trescientos a mil días multa y destitución e inhabilitación de dos a catorce años para desempeñar otro empleo, cargo o comisión públicos.

En ningún caso se devolverá a los responsables del delito de cohecho, el dinero o dádivas entregadas, las mismas se aplicarán en beneficio del Estado.

Capítulo XI Cohecho a servidores públicos extranjeros

Artículo 222 bis.- Se impondrán las penas previstas en el artículo anterior al que con el propósito de obtener o retener para sí o para otra persona ventajas indebidas en el desarrollo o conducción de transacciones comerciales internacionales, ofrezca, prometa o dé, por sí o por interpósita persona, dinero o cualquiera otra dádiva, ya sea en bienes o servicios:

I.- A un servidor público extranjero o a un tercero que éste determine, para que dicho servidor público gestione o se abstenga de gestionar la tramitación o resolución de asuntos relacionados con las funciones inherentes a su empleo, cargo o comisión;

II.- A un servidor público extranjero, o a un tercero que éste determine, para que dicho servidor público lleve a cabo la tramitación o resolución de cualquier asunto que se encuentre fuera del ámbito de las funciones inherentes a su empleo, cargo o comisión, o

III. A cualquier persona para que acuda ante un servidor público extranjero y le requiera o le proponga llevar a cabo la tramitación o resolución de cualquier asunto relacionado con las funciones inherentes al empleo, cargo o comisión de este último.

Para los efectos de este artículo se entiende por servidor público extranjero, toda persona que desempeñe un empleo, cargo o comisión en el poder legislativo, ejecutivo o judicial o en un órgano público autónomo en cualquier orden o nivel de gobierno de un Estado extranjero, sea designado o electo; cualquier persona en ejercicio de una función para una autoridad, organismo o empresa pública o de participación estatal de un país extranjero; y cualquier funcionario o agente de un organismo u organización pública internacional.

Cuando alguno de los delitos comprendidos en este artículo se cometa en los supuestos a que se refiere el artículo 11 de este Código, el juez impondrá a la persona moral hasta mil días multa y podrá decretar su suspensión o disolución, tomando en consideración el grado de conocimiento de los órganos de administración respecto del cohecho en la transacción internacional y el daño causado o el beneficio obtenido por la persona moral.

CAPITULO XII Peculado

Artículo 223.- Comete el delito de peculado:

I.- Todo servidor público que para usos propios o ajenos distraiga de su objeto dinero, valores, fincas o cualquier otra cosa perteneciente al Estado, al organismo descentralizado o a un particular, si por razón de su cargo los hubiere recibido en administración, en depósito o por otra causa.

II.- El servidor público que indebidamente utilice fondos públicos u otorgue alguno de los actos a que se refiere el artículo de uso indebido de atribuciones y facultades con el objeto de promover la imagen política o social de su persona, la de su superior jerárquico o la de un tercero, o a fin de denigrar a cualquier persona.

III.- Cualquier persona que solicite o acepte realizar las promociones o denigraciones a que se refiere la fracción anterior, a cambio de fondos público o del disfrute de los beneficios derivados de los actos a que se refiere el artículo de uso indebido de atribuciones y facultades, y

IV.- Cualquier persona que sin tener el carácter de servidor público federal y estando obligada legalmente a la custodia, administración o aplicación de recursos públicos federales, los distraiga de su objeto para usos propios o ajenos o les dé una aplicación distinta a la que se les destinó.

Al que cometa el delito de peculado se le impondrán las siguientes sanciones:

Cuando el monto de lo distraído o de los fondos utilizados indebidamente no exceda del equivalente de quinientas veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal en el momento de cometerse el delito, o no sea valuable, se impondrán de tres meses a dos años de prisión, multa de treinta a trescientas veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal en el momento de cometerse el delito y destitución e inhabilitación de tres meses a dos años para desempeñar otro empleo, cargo o comisión públicos.

Cuando el monto de los distraído o de los fondos utilizados indebidamente exceda de quinientas veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal en el momento de cometerse el delito, se impondrán de dos años a catorce años de prisión, multa de trescientas a quinientas veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal en el momento de cometerse el delito y destitución e inhabilitación de dos años a catorce años para desempeñar otro empleo, cargo o comisión públicos.

Cuando los recursos materia del peculado sean aportaciones federales para los fines de seguridad pública se aplicará hasta un tercio más de las penas señaladas en los párrafos anteriores.

CAPITULO XIII Enriquecimiento Ilícito

Artículo 224.- Se sancionará a quien con motivo de su empleo, cargo o comisión en el servicio público, haya incurrido en enriquecimiento ilícito. Existe enriquecimiento ilícito cuando el servidor público no pudiere acreditar el legítimo aumento de su patrimonio o la legítima procedencia de los bienes a su nombre o de aquellos respecto de los cuales se conduzca como dueño, en los términos de la Ley Federal de Responsabilidades de los Servidores Públicos.

Incurre en responsabilidad penal, asimismo, quien haga figurar como suyos bienes que el servidor público adquiera o haya adquirido en contravención de lo dispuesto en la misma Ley, a sabiendas de esta circunstancia.

Al que cometa el delito de enriquecimiento ilícito se le impondrán las siguientes sanciones:

Decomiso en beneficio del Estado de aquellos bienes cuya procedencia no se logre acreditar de acuerdo con la Ley Federal de Responsabilidades de los Servidores Públicos.

Cuando el monto a que ascienda el enriquecimiento ilícito no exceda del equivalente de cinco mil veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal, se impondrán de tres meses a dos años de prisión, multa de treinta a trescientas veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal al momento de cometerse el delito y destitución e inhabilitación de tres meses a dos años para desempeñar otro empleo, cargo o comisión públicos.

Cuando el monto a que ascienda el enriquecimiento ilícito exceda del equivalente de cinco mil veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal, se impondrán de dos años a catorce años de prisión, multa de trescientas a quinientas veces el salario mínimo diario vigente en el Distrito Federal al momento de cometerse el delito y destitución e inhabilitación de dos años a catorce años para desempeñar otro empleo, cargo o comisión públicos.

Police Background Check Procedures

Who can apply?

• Nationals and Overseas may apply
• Applicants or somebody on their behalf can make applications

Where?

• The applicant or someone on his behalf can apply only by appointment in Mexico City or PRG offices in each state of Mexico.
• If the applicant cannot attend in person in Mexico they must contact the Consular Section of the Embassy of Mexico in their country.

What must the applicant supply?

Local:
• Letter from his/her Embassy requesting the document. If the applicant is a British national the letter must be issue by the British Embassy in Mexico.
• Passport
• Proof of address. If the document is not in Spanish it must be translated by an official translator
• Valid visa. If the applicant is a foreign national
• Birth certificate. If the document is not in Spanish it must be translated by an official translator
• Two passport size photograph. One front and one right profile photo.
For further details please visit:http://www.pgr.gob.mx/Servicios/Constancia/antecedentes%20registrales.asp
Overseas but somebody must apply on their behalf in Mexico:
• Two sets of finger prints taken by the Mexican Consulate *
• Letter issue by the Mexican Consulate. *
• Power of attorney signed before two witnesses, authorising someone to apply on their behalf, this can be downloaded at the following website: http://consulmex.sre.gob.mx/reinounido/images/stories/pdf/Formato_ca
rta_poder.pdf)
• Passport *
• Valid visa. If the applicant is a foreign national *
• Proof of address. If the document is not in Spanish it must be translated by an official translator
• Birth certificate. If the document is not in Spanish it must be translated by an official translator
• Two passport size photograph. One front and one right profile photo.
For further details please visit: http://www.pgr.gob.mx/Servicios/Constancia/antecedentes%20registrales.asp
* This office is able to take the finger prints and to issue a letter addressed to the Attorney General’s Office in Mexico, stating that the applicant needs to obtain a Certificate. The embassy will attach to the letter two sets of the applicant’s fingerprints, copy of his/her passport, copy of his/her visa and the

power of attorney which has to be signed by the applicant and two witnesses (the applicant will need to bring photocopies of the official identification of the two witnesses). Once the letter has been issued and in order to apply for the Certificate of Criminal Records, the applicant needs to send the letter and the

other requirements listed to the person who is going to apply on his/her behalf in Mexico.
* In order to take the finger prints and to issue the letter the applicant must apply in person at the Consular Section of the Embassy of Mexico at:
Mexican Embassy to the United Kingdom,
16 St.
George St,
W1S 1FD, London,
Tel: 020 7907 9442
Fax: 020 7495 4035
Email: consulmexuk@sre.gob.mx
Website: http://consulmex.sre.gob.mx/reinounido/

What are the costs / turnaround times?

• The fee for the certificate is $130 MXN (Mexican pesos) The PGR takes 10 working days to issue

Contact Details

Dirección General de Control de Procesos Penales
Federales
Av. Insurgentes Sur No. 235, 4º piso, entre C
olima y
Tabasco,
Colonia Roma Norte,
Delegación Cuauhtémoc,
C.P. 06700, México, D.F
Tel: +52 55 5346 0000 Ext. 8428
Email: aregistrales@pgr.gob.mx
Mexican Embassy to the United Kingdom,
16 St. George
St, W1S 1FD,
London
Tel: 020 7907 9442
Fax: 020 7495 4035
Email: consulmexuk@sre.gob.mx
http://consulmex.sre.gob.mx/reinounido/
http://www.pgr.gob.mx/Servicios/Constancia/antecedentes%20registrales.asp

Mexico – Know Your Customer (KYC) Rules

Mexico is a major drug-producing and drug-transit country. Proceeds from the illicit drug trade leaving the United States are the principal source of funds laundered through the Mexican financial system. Other significant sources of laundered proceeds include corruption, kidnapping, and trafficking in firearms and persons.

Sophisticated and well-organized drug trafficking organizations based in Mexico take advantage of the extensive U.S.-Mexico border, the large flow of legitimate remittances, and the high volume of legal commerce to conceal transfers to Mexico. The smuggling of bulk shipments of U.S. currency into Mexico and the repatriation of the funds into the United States via couriers, armored vehicles, and wire transfers remain favored methods for laundering drug proceeds. The combination of a sophisticated financial sector and a large cash-based informal sector complicates the problem.

According to U.S. authorities, drug trafficking organizations send between $19 and $39 billion annually to Mexico from the United States, although the Government of Mexico (GOM) disputes this figure. Mexico has seized over $500 million in bulk currency shipments since 2002.

KNOW-YOUR-CUSTOMER (KYC) RULES:

Enhanced due diligence procedures for PEPs:

PEP is an abbreviation for Politically Exposed Person, a term that describes a person who has been entrusted with a prominent public function, or an individual who is closely related to such a person. The terms PEP, Politically Exposed Person and Senior Foreign Political Figure are often used interchangeably

    • Foreign PEP: YES
    • Domestic PEP: YES

Mexico – KYC covered entities

The following is a list of Know Your Customer entities covered by Mexican Law:

    • Banks
    • Mutual savings companies
    • Insurance companies
    • Securities brokers
    • Retirement and investment funds
    • Financial leasing and factoring funds
    • Casas de Cambio
    • Centros Cambiarios (unlicensed foreign exchange centers)
    • Savings and loans institutions
    • Money remitters
    • SOFOMES (multiple purpose corporate entity) (Sociedades Financieras de Objeto Múltiple)
    • SOFOLES (limited purpose corporate entity) (Sociedad Financiera de Objeto Limitado)
    • General deposit warehouses

Mexico – Suspicious Transaction Reporting (STR) Requirements:

Number of STRs received and time frame: 36,040 – January through September 2011

Number of CTRs received and time frame: 4.1 million – January through September 2011

The following is a list of STR covered entities covered by Mexican Law:

    • Banks
    • Mutual savings companies
    • Insurance companies
    • Securities brokers
    • Retirement and investment funds
    • Financial leasing and factoring funds
    • Casas de Cambio
    • Centros Cambiarios (unlicensed foreign exchange centers)
    • Savings and loans institutions
    • Money remitters
    • SOFOMES (multiple purpose corporate entity) (Sociedades Financieras de Objeto Múltiple)
    • SOFOLES (limited purpose corporate entity) (Sociedad Financiera de Objeto Limitado)
    • General deposit warehouses

MONEY LAUNDERING CRIMINAL PROSECUTIONS/CONVICTIONS:

Prosecutions: 54 from January to October 2011
Convictions: 13 from January to July 2011

ENFORCEMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES AND COMMENTS:

The GOM has taken some important steps to reduce the use of cash in the economy and prevent the laundering of illicit drugs proceeds in U.S. dollars (USD); however, the package of bills submitted in August 2010 to further enhance anti-money laundering regulations remains in limbo in the Mexican Congress.

In June 2010, the Finance Ministry implemented regulations imposing limits on USD transactions in Mexico. The caps, which later were eased for border areas, are applicable to cash transactions from dollars to pesos, including deposits, credit payments, and service fees. In addition to limiting transaction amounts for individuals, all USD transactions are prohibited by the regulation for corporate entities and trusts (including account and non-account holding entities), except for those which are accountholders located in border or tourist areas, for which transactions are limited. The impact of the restrictions has been dramatic, with USD cash repatriation to the U.S. from the Mexican formal financial sector dropping by 50%, or $7 billion.

The new destination for the USD cash no longer entering the Mexican financial system remains an open question. Recent data does not support the hypothesis that the flows would be redirected to Central America and/or the Caribbean. U.S. and Mexican authorities have agreed to continue studying the flow of U.S. currency.

In 2010, the GOM announced the National Strategy for the Prevention and Elimination of Money Laundering and Financing for Terrorism. On April 14, 2011, the Federal Executive sent to Congress a Bill of Decree by which the Federal Criminal Code and the Federal Criminal Procedures Code are to be amended. The bill includes a modification to the Federal Criminal Code in order to expressly establish that a legal person is liable for any money laundering/terrorist financing crimes, among others, committed by any of its legal representatives acting on its behalf. The bill is currently under review by the Senate. The government also submitted a federal law for the Prevention and Identification of Transactions with Criminal Proceeds, which was approved by the Senate on April 28, 2011, and is currently under review by the Congress. The bill includes, among other important aspects, restrictions on the use of cash in certain transactions (i.e., real estate, jewelry, precious stones and metals, games and lotteries, accounting and legal services).

On August 3, 2011, amendments were issued to the General Law of Auxiliary Credit Organizations and Activities to establish the National Banking and Securities Commission (CNBV) as the supervisory authority for AML/CFT with regard to centros cambiarios, money remitters and non-regulated SOFOMES. This authority will be transferred from the Tax Administration System (SAT) to CNBV. The change was made in recognition that the broad experience of CNBV on AML/CFT issues and its risk-based approach to supervision will allow for better oversight of these entities. The amendment provides for a transition period of 240 days. The existing centros cambiarios and money remitters that registered prior to August 4, 2011, or that requested their registration prior to November 1, 2011, may continue with their operations if SAT approves their registration. If the registration is denied, they must suspend their operations. Any new centros cambiarios or money remitters which did not request registration prior to November 1, 2011 are prohibited from initiating operations until receipt of confirmation of registration by SAT. After March 30, 2012, all requests for registration shall be reviewed by CNBV. The general rule establishes that centros cambiaros may only provide the services of buying, selling or exchanging currency, within certain company formation restrictions and with prior authorization from the Ministry of Finance and Public Credit. An exception to the need for prior authorization is established for centros cambiarios that provide the aforementioned services and do not exceed the threshold of $10,000 per client per day.

In 2011, the GOM also issued a number of AML/CFT regulations covering financial entities; specifically: General Provisions applicable to Auxiliary Credit Organizations (issued on 5/31/11); General Provisions applicable to SOFOLES (issued on 3/17/11); and General Provisions applicable to SOFOMES (issued on 3/17/11). These regulations strengthen reporting requirements and expand the range of entities covered under AML/CFT provisions. The regulations represent concrete steps forward, though until the final passage by the Senate of the 2010 package of anti-money laundering bills Mexico‘s regulatory framework will remain incomplete.

Mexico should amend its terrorist financing legislation to fully comport with the UN Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism; and enact legislation and procedures to freeze without delay terrorist assets of those designated by the UN 1267 Sanctions Committee.

Risk

Sovereign risk

A widening of the fiscal deficit, a rising public debt/GDP ratio (now above 40%) and a weak economy resulted in a downgrade of the sovereign risk rating to BB in April. Low oil prices will also constrain revenue growth and necessitate budget cuts in 2015-16. On the positive side, a precautionary credit line with the IMF will support creditworthiness, which is reflected in low sovereign debt yields. Higher borrowing requirement will not pose financing problems.

Banking sector risk

The outlook is underpinned by strong regulation, and solid capital and liquidity indicators. A banking reform that is in the process of being implemented should help to improve credit availability and deepen access to financial services in the medium and long-term. Financial soundness will remain relatively good, despite the economic slowdown.

Political risk

Drug-related violence will remain a challenge. The possibility of a worsening of the ongoing political crisis is a latent risk, particularly if measures to address corruption fall short. The ruling Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI) and its allies may lose their majority after the June 7th mid-term elections.

Economic structure risk

A high level of fiscal dependence on oil revenue and vulnerability to the US business cycle are sources of structural weakness. Efforts in trade and investment diversification will pay off only in the long term, and weak oil prices will reduce the attractiveness of certain energy investments.

Travel Risk

Security

The decision to travel is your responsibility. You are also responsible for your personal safety abroad. The Government of Canada takes the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provides credible and timely information in its Travel Advice. In the event of a crisis situation that requires evacuation, the Government of Canada’s policy is to provide safe transportation to the closest safe location. The Government of Canada will assist you in leaving a country or a region as a last resort, when all means of commercial or personal transportation have been exhausted. This service is provided on a cost-recovery basis. Onward travel is at your personal expense. Situations vary from one location to another, and there may be constraints on government resources that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide assistance, particularly in countries or regions where the potential for violent conflict or political instability is high.

More than 1.9 million Canadians travel to Mexico each year, the vast majority of them without incident.

Northern states (see Advisory)

Shootouts, attacks and illegal roadblocks may occur without warning. Criminals especially target sport utility vehicles and full-size pickup trucks for theft and carjacking along highways. Avoid inter-city road travel in the northern states.

Travel to and within Ciudad Juarez poses particular challenges and requires extreme caution.

Exercise a high degree of caution when travelling in the city of Monterrey, avoid movement after dark and stay within the suburb of San Pedro Garza García.

South-Western states (see Advisory)

Criminal activity has significantly increased in the states of Jalisco, Guerrero and Michoacán. Illegal roadblocks and demonstrations have been reported on a more frequent basis. The deterioration of the security situation is particularly noticeable in the rural areas of Guerrero and Michoacán. The rapid expansion of vigilante militias is troubling, and there have been instances where such groups have fired at vehicles that did not adhere to their roadblocks.

Organized crime

In northern Mexico, particularly along the border with the United States, organized crime and urban violence affect security. Confrontations between organized criminal groups and Mexican authorities continue to pose a problem. This has led to an increase in illegal roadblocks, robberies, kidnappings and carjackings, including in the city of Monterrey.

Heavily armed gangs have attacked travellers driving through Matamoros, Reynosa, and Nuevo Laredo in the state of Tamaulipas but also on several highways in the states of Nuevo León, Coahuila, Durango, and Sinaloa. Violence related to organized crime has increased in the states of Guerrero (including Acapulco), Sinaloa (including Mazatlán), Morelos, Nayarit, Michoacán, San Luis Potosi, Veracruz, and Zacatecas, and Jalisco.

In some parts of the country, military and federal police forces have been deployed in efforts to combat organized crime and improve security conditions. They maintain a visible presence patrolling the streets, setting up roadblocks, and conducting random vehicle checks. Armed clashes between security forces and criminal groups do occur in certain areas without warning. You could get caught in the crossfire.

Crime

Crime rates in Mexico are high. Arrest and detention rates are low and contribute to high levels of criminality.

If you are the victim of a crime, report it immediately to the Agencia del Ministerio Público nearest to the crime scene. No criminal investigation is possible without a formal complaint to Mexican authorities.

Complaints must be made in person before leaving Mexico. You must present photo identification. It is especially important to report the loss or theft of your identification documents, both to Mexican authorities and to the nearest Canadian consular point of service in Mexico, in order to protect yourself should the documents later be misused.

Law enforcement and police presence is often lacking near the border with Guatemala, particularly in the state of Chiapas.

Theft

Theft—including armed robbery, purse snatching, and pickpocketing—is common in Mexico. If you are threatened by robbers, stay calm and do not resist. Canadians have been injured while trying to resist armed robberies. You should be aware of your surroundings at all times, even in areas normally considered safe, and take precautions to secure your belongings and minimize your risk of becoming a target for thieves. Blend in, avoid wearing or carrying expensive jewellery, and carry only small amounts of cash. Keep your luggage secure at all times. In resort areas, leave your passport and valuables in your hotel safe, not in your hotel room or on the beach, while you are swimming.

Foreigners have been targeted in assault and robbery incidents, which are often violent. Victims have been followed after exchanging or withdrawing money at airports, currency exchange bureaus (casas de cambio), and automated banking machines (ABMs). Avoid withdrawing or exchanging money in public areas of the airport. If a financial transaction is absolutely necessary, ensure only small amounts are involved and execute the transaction before exiting the customs area.

Withdraw or exchange money at ABMs or exchange bureaus during daylight hours only, and inside reputable hotels and malls rather than on the street. Always conceal the keypad when entering your personal identification number, even if nobody else is around. Keep your credit card in sight when paying for goods and services.

Assault

Incidents of physical and sexual assault against foreigners have been reported, in some cases implicating hotel employees, taxi drivers, and security personnel. Avoid walking after dark, especially alone, and avoid deserted or under-populated areas. You should only frequent bars and nightclubs as part of a group and avoid separating from the group. In cases of sexual assault, police authorities will require a medical examination.

Be wary of accepting snacks, beverages, gum, or cigarettes from new acquaintances, as they may contain drugs that could put you at risk of sexual assault and robbery. Avoid excessive alcohol consumption, and do not accept invitations or rides from strangers or recent acquaintances, as this can make you a more vulnerable target for criminals.

Demonstrations and elections

Demonstrations and protests occur regularly. Avoid large gatherings, as they could erupt into violent incidents at any time. Demonstrations and roadblocks are common in Mexico City (including to and from the airport) and in the states of Guerrero, Michoacán and Oaxaca. Participation in political demonstrations by foreigners is prohibited and may result in detention, expulsion, and the denial of future entry into Mexico.

Local elections are planned for June 7, 2015 in some states of Mexico and general elections will take place across the country on the same day. Consult the national electoral institute’s (Instituto Nacional Electoral) website (in Spanish only) for more information. Avoid all demonstrations, follow the advice of local authorities and monitor local media.

Kidnappings

Kidnappings, including the kidnapping of Canadian citizens (and contractors working for Canadian businesses), do occur in Mexico, affecting primarily persons working in rural areas, located outside the areas of stronger institutional control of police and government authorities.

Kidnappers target both the wealthy and middle class. Foreigners are not specifically targeted but may be perceived as being wealthy.

Express kidnappings, i.e. attempts to get quick cash in exchange for the release of an individual, occur frequently in large urban areas. The most common practice involves thieves working in cooperation with, or posing as, taxi drivers. The thieves force victims to withdraw money from ABMs with their debit or credit cards in exchange for their release. Victims are sometimes held overnight so that a second withdrawal up to the victim’s daily bank withdrawal limit can also be made the following day. Avoid hailing taxis on the street and instead call a reputable taxi company or use the taxi services located at a major hotel.

A common scam throughout Mexico is ‘virtual’ kidnapping, where a perpetrator identifies a person who is temporarily unreachable by cell phone or email, and then contacts that person’s family claiming that they have kidnapped their loved one, and demanding an immediate ransom for their release. When the family members cannot reach their loved one in Mexico, they may assume that the person has been kidnapped, when in fact they are simply unreachable. Perpetrators may use social media sites to gather information about potential victims.

Any kidnapping, real or virtual, should be reported to the police as well as to the Embassy of Canada in Mexico City or the nearest Canadian consulate.

Scams

Criminals posing as police officers approach tourists and ask for their passports or for foreign currency.

Legitimate police officers have extorted money from tourists or arrested tourists for minor offences or traffic violations. If this occurs, do not hand over your money or your passport. Instead, ask for the officer’s name, badge and patrol car number, the location of the arrest, and the written fine payable at a later date. Should you feel the fine cannot be justified, proceed to the nearest Agencia del Ministerio Público or Tourism Office to file a complaint.

Do not divulge personal information to strangers either in person or over the phone. Virtual kidnapping by telephone is a common practice in Mexico. Should you receive a call from someone demanding payment for the release of an arrested or kidnapped family member, remain calm, note the phone number of the person calling, hang up, and report the call to local police. Scam artists have also gathered information on luggage tags in hotel lobbies and later convinced guests to give them their contact information in Canada. Afterwards, they have called parents of travelling Canadians to report that their child has been detained or hospitalized and have requested that money be wired to Mexico. If this occurs, parents or friends should request the name and number of the caller and contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa (see Help Abroad).

Road safety

Avoid road travel at night between cities throughout the country. Toll (cuota) highways are safer than secondary highways. Overnight, ensure that you only stop in major centres, at reputable hotels or secure campsites.

Road conditions vary and can be poor in some areas. Dangerous curves, poorly marked signs and construction sites, roaming livestock, slow-moving or abandoned vehicles, and other obstacles pose hazards.

Mexican driving styles and road safety standards are very different from those in Canada. Police do not regularly patrol the highways. Be prepared for drivers that fail to observe speed limits, indicate lane changes, or stop at red lights. Pedestrians should be extremely cautious at all times. Fatal hit-and-run accidents occur. Keep your car doors locked and the windows rolled up, especially at traffic lights, where you can be a target for criminals.

In the event of a vehicle breakdown or roadside emergency, a highway patrol service offered by the Mexican Ministry of Tourism (SECTUR), called the Green Angels (Angeles Verdes), provides free assistance on all major toll highways from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. In case of an emergency, dial 078 or the toll-free number in Mexico, 01-800-006-8839.

Scooter rentals

The number of moped and scooter accidents involving tourists is increasing. Avoid renting from operators who do not provide insurance and who do not provide a helmet with the rental. Be vigilant while driving. Avoid driving on roads in disrepair and refrain from driving at night.

Public transportation

Although public transportation is relatively safe, take precautions in airports, bus stations, and the Mexico City metro, which are often very crowded and popular areas for pickpockets. Avoid travelling late at night and during rush hour, if possible, and exercise caution at all times.

Canadians have been robbed on buses, usually at night. Keep an eye on your luggage, money, and personal documents at all times. Bus accidents occur frequently due to speeding, poor road conditions, and mountainous terrain. You should travel during daylight hours and on first-class buses only.

Hitchhiking is not a common practice in Mexico and is not recommended.

Taxis

You should only use hotel taxis or taxis based at designated stands (sitios). In Mexico City, all government-authorized taxis have licence plates starting with an A or a B. Taxis from designated stands have both the logo of their company and the plate number stamped on the side of the car. Always ask the dispatcher for the driver’s name and the taxi’s licence plate number, model, and colour. When arriving at Benito Juárez Airport in Mexico City, you should only use airport taxis, after prepaying the fare inside the airport. Ask to see the driver’s official identification.

Scooter rentalsThe number of moped and scooter accidents involving tourists is increasing. Avoid renting from operators who do not provide insurance and who do not provide a helmet with the rental. Be vigilant while driving. Avoid driving on roads in disrepair and refrain from driving at night.

Air transportation

See Transportation Safety in order to verify if national airlines meet safety standards.

General security information

Monitor local news sources on a regular basis to learn about events that could affect your personal safety. Leave your itinerary and contact information with friends or family in Canada.

On beaches, take posted warnings about swimming conditions seriously. Many beaches are not supervised or do not offer warnings. When in doubt, consult hotel staff.

Ensure that the recreational activities you choose are covered by your travel insurance or by a local insurance policy, and that sporting and aquatic equipment is safe and in good condition, especially for scuba diving. Many operators do not conduct regular safety checks. Canadians have been involved in accidents in the past where operators of recreational vehicles such as scooters and watercrafts demanded compensation in excess of the value of the damage caused to the vehicle or equipment.

Exercise caution when standing close to balcony railings, as falls have resulted in deaths and injuries.

Height standards for balcony railings in Mexico can be considerably lower than those in Canada.

For emergency services, dial 060 or 066.

Annual Cases

Budget Autonomy No
Annual Budget of the Agency
Per Capital Expenditure
Expeniture as % of the GDP
Are employees protected by law from recrimination or other negative consequences when reporting corruption (i.e. whistle-blowing)? No
Does your country have freedom of information legislation? Yes
Does your country have conflict of interest legislation? No
Does your country have a financial disclosure system to help prevent conflicts of interest? Yes
Who appoints the head of your agency? The appointment is based on obtaining the best results at the court.
Who has the authority to remove the head of the ACA? The President.
Is there any term limit for the head of the ACA? Yes , Six year term limit
Does your agency measure performance? No
Number of investigations launched
Number of investigations completed
Full access to Government Yes

Address Format

RECIPIENT

[STREET_TYPE] STREET_NAME HOUSE_NUMBER [FLOOR] [APARTMENT]
[COLONIA] [,] [VILLAGE]
POSTAL_CODE LOCALITY, PROVINCE_ABBREVIATION
MEXICO

Sample

OCTAVIO AZUELA
PRIVADA UNION 126
IZTACALCO, COL. AGRÍCOLA PANTITLÁN
08100 MEXICO, DF
MEXICO

 

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