Monday, September 27

A representative of the Gürtel construction company, sentenced to three years in prison for hiding payments for public works through shell companies

A decoration company in Benicàssim that simulated public works in hospitals. Another company that paid exorbitant fees to a businessman who was abroad at that time … Jaime Luis Losada Castell, representative and joint attorney-in-fact of the Teconsa construction company, has been sentenced to three years in prison as the perpetrator responsible for a crime against the Public Treasury in competition with a crime of documentary falsification.

The businessman, according to the ruling of the first section of the Castellón Provincial Court, stopped paying a fee of 288,253 euros to the Treasury for remuneration from Teconsa, the construction company involved in the Gürtel plot, “using its position as representative” in the trade. To “hide the true destination of the proceeds” he used mock contracts and false invoices through an “intervening partnership” created with his wife. The marriage remained provisionally released for this cause, investigated by the Court of Instruction number 4 of Castellón.

Thus, Ópalo Interiores SL, dedicated to the retail trade of furniture and decoration items for the home and whose registered office was located in a Benicàssim store, issued two invoices for a total of 577,710 euros to the company KYZ Profesionales SL, an office of architects of Soria belonging to another of those convicted in the case.

The Soria firm had been hired by a joint venture in which Teconsa participated, awarded by the Junta de Castilla y León for the execution of the works of the Salamanca hospital complex. It is, according to the proven facts of the sentence, of “invoices that did not respond to a real provision of services” by the Benicàssim decoration shop.

Thus, KYZ Profesionales SL and Ópalo Interiores SL signed in 2012 a private contract for professional collaboration for the provision of services, “which were only provided in a minimal part”. Furthermore, the delineation works were subcontracted to another company since the firm of Teconsa’s attorney and his wife lacked the professional and material means to provide the contracted services. To round off the move, the Benicàssim store signed an order form for the provision of services that simulated a freelance contract for Jaime Luis Losada Castell.

The contract with the Soria company “was only intended to channel through Ópalo Interiores SL the collection by the accused of irregular amounts negotiated” with another convicted person, the legal representative of KYZ Profesionales SL. When the Benicàssim store obtained the payments, the Teconsa representative was able to dispose of the money as if it had been entered into his own assets “through transfers directly to his accounts, use of credit cards, constitution of fixed-term deposits or other banking operations for the disposal of funds “.

The sentence flatly questions the operation for the works of the Salamanca hospital. Neither the architectural firm of Soria could subcontract the works to a company owned by a member of the UTE, nor Jaime Luis Losada Castell and his Benicàssim store “were professionally qualified (they lacked the appropriate qualifications) to collaborate on a project of the magnitude of the Hospital Complex of Salamanca “. Ópalo Interiores SL was a company dedicated to the retail trade and home decoration items “that only ran a furniture and decorative items store in Benicàssim and had no previous experience in works in a hospital”.

Price “exorbitant”

The magistrates also emphasize that the firm paid Ópalo Interiores SL before receiving the invoices and before carrying out “the supposedly contracted works.” A price, in addition, “exorbitant” compared to the total fees agreed within the UTE “taking into account the supposedly residual nature of the same.” “There is no objective data that shows that the services that appear in the contract had been carried out”, concludes the court decision.

To curl the loop, the fraudster was not even in Spain at that time. “It is significant that during the month of August 2012 the defendant made several trips to South America while he was working for Teconsa and fulfilling the contract,” the sentence adds.

The convicted businessman also received payments of almost 30,000 euros from the Malaga firm Construcciones Miguel Rebollo SL, which was part of a joint venture with Teconsa for the execution of the works of the Antequera Fair and Exhibition Center, awarded by the town council. This payment “was exclusively intended to pay for services of an irregular nature of unknown origin rendered by the accused,” says the sentence.

Free and undeclared housing and Audi

The convicted person also did not declare the income in kind for the free use of a Teconsa property in Madrid as a habitual residence, as well as the free use of an Audi model Q-7. Ultimately, as stated by a tax inspector during the oral trial, the businessman “had both the home and the vehicle free of charge to move and reside in Madrid, without them being declared.”

The sentence recognizes the mitigation of undue delays to all the accused (five years, eight months and a day have passed since the start of the procedural actions, an “obviously excessive” time) and imposes a civil liability of 288,253 euros to be paid jointly and jointly and severally for all those sentenced to the Public Treasury.

The businessman’s wife and the rest of the defendants have been sentenced to two years in prison as necessary cooperators of a crime against the Public Treasury in competition with a crime of documentary falsification. The three companies have also been convicted as perpetrators responsible for the same crime and also lose the possibility of obtaining subsidies or public aid.

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