Mexico’s ruling party denied a report in a local investigative publication that its leader, Mario Delgado, had been part of a notorious sex cult.
The Morena party’s press office contested on Thursday the investigation by Animal Politico, which alleged that Delgado was a member of NXIVM, a society whose leader was jailed for 120 years in October for charges including sex trafficking and abuse. The report said Delgado paid for membership and took self-help classes run by a group within NXIVM over a six-month period in 2016.
Delgado was never a member of the group, and only took leadership classes there without knowing the larger organization was involved in trafficking, a press officer said in response to questions by Bloomberg News.
The classes were taken “in good faith” and at a time when the accusations against the group weren’t known, Delgado said, according to a statement posted in his Twitter account.
The party is still trying to determine how many classes he took, the press officer said. Animal Politico alleged Delgado made several membership payments of $50 during the six months, but didn’t specify how many, saying it had deposit receipts of the payments in its possession.
As Morena leader, Delgado is in charge of the party’s strategy as it aims to keep its lower-house majority and pick up governorships in the June 6 midterm elections. The party was founded by President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.