Funes, Mauricio

Funes, Mauricio

(Carlos Mauricio Funes Cartagena), 1959–, Salvadoran journalist and politician, president of El Salvador (2009–14). A television reporter, he became known for his news reporting and analysis on El Salvador's long civil war and for his insightful interviews. A moderate leftist, Funes developed sympathy for many of the aims of the left-wing Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN). A news director from 1997, he was fired in 2005 as a result of his criticism of the conservative government. Subsequently more directly involved in politics, Funes became the FMLN's 2009 presidential candidate and won, becoming the country's first elected leftist leader. In 2016, while under investigation for having illegally enriched himself during his presidency, which he charged was political persecution, he was granted political asylum by Nicaragua. A Salvadoran court ruled in 2017 in a civil case that he and one of his sons had illegally enriched themselves.