• Courts.The judge continues the case for the aid of the EREs to the Sierra Norte de Sevilla and prosecutes 30 people between senior officials and businessmen
  • Corruption: In 'El Cruce' of the ERE, the ground zero of the looting where Guerrero was 'the Marquis'

At the epicenter of the ERE plot, in the Seville region of Sierra Norte, the money from the "reptile fund" ran for years without control and without measure. There was a "special interest" on the part of the PSOE governments to favor an area with which, especially the leadership of the Employment Ministry, had close ties, both personal and political. Up to 22 million euros reached this corner of the province of Seville in a few years and to achieve a part of the loot it was almost an essential requirement to be a 'friend or neighbor of' and a plus to be a member of the PSOE. If you had the backing of a 'sponsor' with direct access to the Employment Department and almost to the savings bank, the subsidy - irregular, of course - was guaranteed.

The last order issued by the Court of Instruction 6 of Seville -by which agrees to the prosecution of about thirty defendants- brings to light the figure of these 'godparents', characters who until now had gone almost unnoticed but who played a key role in order for the money from the ERE to get where it came, public officials from the PSOE at the local or provincial level who pulled strings, picked up phones and got meetings at the highest level for businessmen related to the party, neighbors or personal friends, the bulk of the beneficiaries of the around 22 million that in a few years were distributed throughout the Sierra Norte, as if it were the Gordo of the Lottery, but without a draw. Literally, by hand. And all in the fiefdom of the counselor José Antonio Viera and his director of Labor, Javier Guerrero, known as 'el Marqués' in his native land, the town of El Pedroso where he reigned and even now there are still those who defend him.

In the order issued on the 10th and released this week, the judge José Ignacio Vilaplana focuses on three mediators or successors to whom the title of 'godparents', according to the facts imputed to them, fits the perfection. These are Gerardo DLCE, head of the area in those years of the bank Caja San Fernando; Carmelo Montero, socialist mayor of Guadalcanal and, most especially, of Manuel Enrique Rodríguez, provincial manager in Seville of the Andalusian Development Institute (IFA), which would later be renamed the IDEA Agency, the ERE pay box.

In the 18 grants received by many other companies in the early 2000s, these three characters played a very important role, who sponsored their owners, in some cases family or friends, opening the doors of the Guerrero Labor Directorate or the same Ministry of Employment.

The former IFA provincial manager was, of the three, the great godfather of the EREs in the Sierra Norte de Sevilla. Judge Vilaplana's order relates him directly to five of the companies that most benefited from the aid from the "reptile fund" but, above all, it highlights their extraordinary influence , their ability to even commit aid. Having their guarantee was, in practice, like having the subsidy deposited in the bank account.

One of the cases highlighted by the magistrate is that of aid to the SCA San Sebastián company, of which the mayor of Guadalcanal, Carmelo Montero, was president, another of the 'godparents' of the Sierra Norte and who told at the time how Enrique Rodríguez managed the aid of a million euros and who knew the IFA manager from the times when he was a councilor in Las Navas de la Concepción. Through his intermediation, Montero met with the counselor himself, José Antonio Viera, and with Guerrero.

Manuel Enrique Rodríguez also served as 'godfather' of the owner of the company Tialna (who received 730,000 euros), Benito Miguel OO, an affiliate of the PSOE in Las Navas and a personal friend of whom lived very close. It was the IFA manager who insisted that he ask for help.

Rodríguez and the former director of Labor, recounted the order of the Court of Instruction 6 of Seville, met at the headquarters of the PSOE in Las Navas with the businessmen who received the aid and who was later blessed by the counselor Viera, with whom the manager of the IFA had a "close" relationship. To the point that, according to the former CEO of the IFA, Francisco Mencía, they were "very friendly."

A motion of censure

The former manager of the Andalusian Development Institute in Seville did favors, but he also charged them. According to the order and the statements of witnesses, he orchestrated a motion of censure against the mayor of Las Navas, Antonio Gutiérrez Lora, with supporters including beneficiaries of the subsidies.

Carmelo Montero , whose name has already appeared in these lines, also had a patronage role in the distribution of ERE aid in the Sierra Norte. From his position as mayor of Guadalcanal by the PSOE, he mediated, and managed, that at least three companies accessed the looted money from public coffers, one of them an instrumental society that never had workers. In the case of Refractarios Guadalcanal, the court order says that their mediation was "indispensable".

He was not a politician, but the person in charge of Caja San Fernando - who later merged and gave rise to El Monte - in the region also had an important role in the distribution of irregular subsidies. Directly, always according to the court ruling, Gerardo DLCE influenced the granting of six grants to as many companies.

But, in addition, in more than a few cases, he himself advanced the money from the aid from the bank for which he worked after assuming the collection rights.

Three crimes

The investigating judge considers that the almost thirty investigated following the cause may have committed crimes of prevarication administrative, embezzlement and forgery, so has transfer of the car to the Anti - Corruption Prosecutor 's Office and other parties personadas so that, Within a month, file the formal accusations, request the filing of the case or, exceptionally, request new proceedings. The order by which it is agreed to continue with the abbreviated procedure is a previous step to the request for the opening of the oral trial.

The companies that received irregular aid and that are the object of investigation in this piece are: Coflosur; Shipyards of Constantine; SCA San Sebastián de Guadalcanal; Grueso y García SL; Pema, Jamones y Embutidos SL; Tialna SL; Corsevilla SCA; El Venero de Móstoles SL; La Posada del Moro Hotel; Romero Álvarez SA; SCA Virgen del Robledo; Cheeses and Sausages Dehesa Real de la Jara SL; Dehesa Navera SL; Promociones Vinícolas de Sevilla SL; Vivir El Barro SL; Refractarios Guadalcanal SA; Refractarios Andalucía SL, and Andalucine SL

The judge affirms that all the aid granted "would lack a defined and concrete object" and was carried out "without observance of the applicable principles of publicity, concurrence and objectivity, being granted by the corresponding director general of Labor and Social Security without competence for it , without reasoned and justified resolution of the concession, without accreditation of the necessary requirements to obtain it and without justifying in any way the exceptional nature of the corresponding aid ".

According to the criteria of The Trust Project

Know more

  • Andalusia
  • Seville
  • ERE case
  • Corruption
  • PSOE

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