Mexican government sanctions two former senior Pemex executives

Credit: REUTERS/Carlos Jasso

Adds more details from statement, background

MEXICO CITY, May 22 (Reuters) - Mexico's government announced on Wednesday it had sanctioned two senior executives at state oil firm Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) from the previous administration, saying public funds had been misused in the purchase of fertilizer business Fertinal.

The Public Administration Ministry said in a statement that one of the two former executives, who were not named, was issued a sanction of almost 620 million pesos ($32.7 million) and barred from holding public office for 15 years.

That sum was equivalent to the extra cost Pemex incurred in the purchase of Fertinal, the ministry added.

The other ex-Pemex executive was barred from holding public office for 10 years for giving false information about the state of the company's accounts, the ministry said.

Pemex said the acquisition of Fertinal, which was completed in 2016, cost the company $255 million and that it expected to recover the investment in less than three years.

The Fertinal purchase was criticized by industry experts who questioned the value of the deal for the Mexican taxpayer.

($1 = 18.9801 Mexican pesos)

(Reporting by Sharay Angulo, Writing by Dave Graham; editing by Diane Craft)

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