Two Mexican cardinals, a bishop, and three priests have been convicted of constitutional violations for warning the public against the ruling party’s opposition to the values of human life and family, their advocacy of the LGBT agenda, and their promotion of socialism.

The convictions have caused alarm in Mexico regarding their implications for freedom of speech and the right to criticize the socialist ruling party “Morena,” which is accused of undermining Mexican civil liberties.

Among the convicted were the Cardinal Archbishop of Mexico City, Carlos Aguiar Retes, and the former archbishop of Guadalajara, Cardinal Juan Sandoval Íñiguez. The decision was handed down on November 18 by Mexico’s national Electoral Tribunal in response to a lawsuit filed by Mexico’s ruling socialist party, the Movement for Social Regeneration (MORENA).

One of the tribunal judges, Villafuerte Coello, denounced the accused clerics for encouraging Catholics “to pray and ask God to illuminate them when they vote,” in a video transmission of her statements during the proceedings.

“Of course that mustn’t be permitted,” said Cuello. “Votes aren’t celestial or spiritual things. This is about deciding votes with knowledge, with information, apart from pondering other things and this is just what must be respected, because celestial inspiration is not going to cause the best people to be in popularly elected positions. It’s logical….”

The primary target of the tribunal’s wrath was Cardinal Juan Sandoval Íñiguez, who was convicted both of interfering in a national election as well as violating the constitution’s separation of Church and state.

According to the court, Cardinal Juan Sandoval Íñiguez offended the constitution by stating, in a YouTube video of June 2 of this year, “There is much at stake in these elections.nIf those who are in power win, a dictatorship will come, that is, liberty will be lost, because we’re talking about a system that is communist, socialist, that enslaves. You just need to look at the countries that have falle into it.” He also warned that the economy of Mexico would be “very damaged . . . we’re going to be very poor like Venezuela, like Cuba….”

Sandoval has refused to apologize for his statements and doubled down in early October, repeating his call not to vote for pro-abortion politicians….

The above comes from a Dec. 7 story in Catholic World Report.