Latin America

Officer surprises Mexico by turning over package containing €2,200

Gesture seen unusual in a country where public safety officials are considered corrupt

Bank security guard Sergio Ángel Soriano.
Bank security guard Sergio Ángel Soriano.SSPDF

Sergio Ángel Soriano Buendía, a bank security officer, made news across Mexico on Sunday after he found a bag that contained some 42,000 pesos (€2,200) in the parking garage of a department store and handed it over, so that the money could be returned to its rightful owner.

In Mexico City, where corruption and violence are rampant and most policemen are considered dishonest, Soriano Buendía’s Good Samaritan gesture was not only applauded by the Federal District’s Public Safety Secretariat, but also across social media.

Soriano Buendía was working security Sunday morning in the parking area at the shopping center in Mexico City’s fashionable Polanco district when he found a red paper bag containing the money, IDs and credit cards.

Public Safety Secretariat officials said that the bag contained an official ID, a driver’s license, a permit for a truck, five bank and store credit cards and other personal items, along with 42,572 pesos in bills and coins of different denominations.

The amount was about 5.7 times the average monthly salary of an officer, according to the Transparency website of the Federal District’s bank security guards.

The officer took the package to the security monitoring area where he turned it over in front of his supervisors.

According to the secretariat, the female owner of package and her family thanked Soriano Buendía for his good deed.

The red bag containing the money and credit cards that was found Sunday in the parking garage of a Mexico City shopping center.
The red bag containing the money and credit cards that was found Sunday in the parking garage of a Mexico City shopping center.SSPDF

According to a series of surveys conducted by the National University in Mexico, police officers rank the lowest in trustworthy ratings of public officials. That is despite the fact that the Federal District’s attorney general assures the public that all officers have passed rigorous ethics exams and tests.

But in early December the reputation of the force suffered a blow when two judicial police officers tried to kidnap a man.

Nevertheless, there are some good officers out there. Recently, the capital’s police force honored Margarita Martínez as officer of the year for helping rescue 78 children from a fire that broke out at a daycare center.

English version by Martin Delfín.

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