Former executive director of the Puerto Rico Health Insurance Administration (ASES, by its Spanish acronym), Angela Ávila Marrero, has been arrested today.
Also, Fernando Scherrer, CEO of BDO, an accounting firm with government contracts, has been arrested this morning along Alberto Velázquez Piñol, a BDO contractor and former Puerto Rico Secretary of Health, Rafael Rodríguez advisor.
Also former secretary of Education, Julia Keleher has been arrested today in Washington, DC.
The people arrested in Puerto Rico will be brought to the initial hearing before federal magistrate Bruce Magiverin. At 11:00 a.m. the federal authorities will hold a press conference.
Luis Rivera-Santana, FBI spokesperson, confirmed that U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and U.S Department of Education Office Inspector General agents deliver the arrest warrants.
Amid a string of federal investigations involving high-ranking officials, Ávila Marrero resigned from her duties on June 25.
The resignation was issued at a time when both ASES and the Department of Health are rumored to be implied in the FBI’s investigations regarding contract irregularities and probable offenses.
Ávila Marrero had been interviewed by federal authorities.
Gov. Ricardo Rosselló, who is on vacation with his family outside the island, said in a written statement this morning:
"Maintaining the trust of the people in the government institutions is a constant challenge that we all have in the public service.
That trust is lamented when public or related officials are accused of corruption offenses.
As a society we must reject all behavior outside the law, be it in the public service, in the private sector, or in any activity.
As governor, I assume the responsibility and commitment to fight that evil in all instances, until I can make Puerto Rico an example of the values and principles on which a more just, dignified and productive society is built.
I reiterate that our administration will not tolerate corruption and that anyone who fails to trust must pay with the full weight of law. Also, I reiterate the call for collaboration with the law and order agencies that work in these cases. "
This is a developing story