The case of the masks
The intermediary who acted in the failed SCS purchase of masks defends himself: "I am a distraction, the weakest link"
Lucas Cruz, the intermediary who participated in the failed purchase by the
Canary Health Service (SCS) of a million 3M masks
in exchange for four million eurosdefended his role in the operation alleging that he only put "several people in contact" and was surprised that Health paid in advance to
RR7 United without this company -which denounced it- having experience in the sector:
«RR7 signed the contract and collected the four million without having the masks, “he explained.
The businessman declared to this newspaper from the Middle East, where he is currently residing, that in this operation of buying masks by the Canarian Executive and that it is investigating the
Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's OfficeHe is a
simple diversionary maneuver, I'm the weakest link In this business, I'm fed up, but I'm also sure that more things will come out," he said. “If they call me from the Prosecutor's Office, I will talk to them and give them all the information I have, even if I am abroad. I am not aware that there is any problem with me since
I was not the specialized intermediaryI was only a witness to see how a third party did an operation, "he explained.
This case has been investigated since last April 8 by the Las Palmas Delegation of the Special Prosecutor's Office against Corruption and Organized Crime,
RR7 for fraud and Health for prevarication and embezzlement.
Cruz denounces that "I'm sure more things will come out" and anticipates that "he will tell all the details" if the prosecutor calls him
Lucas Cruz said he met
Rayco González, sole administrator of RR7, “in June 2020 during the confinement because a third party told me that if he knew of someone who had masks because they had signed a contract for four million euros with the Canary Islands Health Service and they could not find the material,” he narrated. «I replied that he was going to look for and
I contacted my friend Ihsan Mahmhoud. They negotiated everything and even created a partnership to do business, both with the masks and with other issues related to oil.
From that moment on, Cruz insisted, "Ihsan Mahmhoud contracted the services of a
fiduciary solicitor in London named Charles Douglas to look for the masks, check them, pass all the necessary filters and then serve them to the SCS, “he said. He said that he was surprised that the sole administrator of RR7 told him “that he had been looking for 3M FFP3 masks on the market for some time, despite the fact that
had signed the contract and received the four million from SCS. She did it without having the merchandise available. I asked him how it had been that he was awarded the contract without having the masks and without dedicating himself to the health field and he told me not to worry », she stressed.
It was clear at all times that
RR7 and the SCS "had entered into a legitimate contract and then I got down to work on my brokerage job. I asked him later how a company with 3,000 euros of share capital can sign a contract for such millionaire amounts and he did not give me a clear answer. But let it be clear,
I appeared in June 2020 for the search of a supplier of masks to Despite the fact that I told them that I was not specialized in this field and after they spent five months looking for them, "he denounced.
When they signed the purchase contract for the
3M model 1860 masks, Cruz explained that they did it “with a lawyer who operates daily in foreign trade transactions, knows what he is talking about and how to verify the product. Ihsan even went to Addis Ababa, when he finished loading, with an inspector to check the shipment, they made a report, they sent it to the lawyer who ordered the payment and the masks flew to Gran Canaria.
It seems that I was the one who received the four million and, if there really is a problem between the exporter and the importer RR7,
Why didn't they file a claim? My job is to be an entrepreneur and connect people to do business and, in this case, all the documents were correct, "he argued.
that were not approved
About the crux of the matter about whether the masks were fake -as RR7 maintains- or were not approved in Spain -as the supplier argues, Lucas Cruz aligned himself with the second thesis: «
I see normal that the Customs retain the product since upon receiving it and checking the documentation, you are surprised that this merchandise is received by a company that is not dedicated to the health sector. Automatically
the DUA enters a red light and review the documentation. I experienced this situation in the first person with inspectors, the Treasury, counts, 3M, documentation and others.
That merchandise was not even sold in 3M Spain because it did not comply with the European certification and
I don't understand why they asked for them. That is why they destroyed the shipment », he declared.
complained of what he considers a "persecution" towards his person since he appeared on the public scene representing a supposed investment fund that attempted a
failed purchase of CB Gran Canaria: «
It seems even illegal to make money to the point that now I am in another country working because, after the noise generated by the Gran Canaria affair, my life went to waste and my reputation fell to the ground, "concluded Lucas Cruz.
“If there is a problem, I deposit the 25,000 euros that I received in court,” he said
The intermediary wanted to defend himself against the news published in CANARIAS7 that he had received a commission of 25,000 euros for the purchase of some masks that turned out to be false, according to 3M. «It is true that they paid me, but my commission was not even 1% of the total and they paid me as an advance. If this is a problem, I consign the 25,000 euros to the court until they clarify the problem », he said.
Cruz, who announced that he had "no contract signed with RR7", did not reveal the specific amount he was going to receive for his intermediation: "Rayco changed the amount he was going to pay me 17 times and there were so many intermediaries in the operation that I've already lost count," he told this newspaper.
Where are the four million that the SCS paid to RR7 then? Cruz says he is unaware of this extreme: «I can only tell what I know. That some masks were located in South Africa but their government retained them, it had already been an emergency and they returned half the money and they agreed to return the rest. It was a failed operation. Then they paid the 3M disbursing 2.65 million. The rest? Well, we will have to ask RR7. I received 25,000 euros, but unfortunately I have no idea about the rest.
Lucas Cruz is not aware that he has been denounced, «I found out from the press. My responsibility is linked to the payment of the intermediation and if things don't work out, I'm not going to give it to RR7, I'll make it available to the court. I did a job with all the good faith in the world and I'm not a chorizo for it, "he denounced.