An email sent by the person responsible for purchasing medical supplies by the Madrid City Council, Elena Collado, reveals that the council considered the possibility that Luis Medina and Alberto Luceño were commission agents but that they rejected it, trusting the word of the alleged businessmen. On March 23, 2020, Collado writes to Matilde García Duarte -Mayor Almeida's right-hand man- in which he states: "Our suppliers Luis Medina and Alberto Luceño (who have companies in China but are from Madrid) who should be given several medals, they are taking care of the 'big' part of our needs and have waived all kinds of commissions”.
The judge in the mask case cites Almeida's right-hand man as a witness
The email, to which elDiario.es has had access, also adds a hitherto unknown fact, that Medina and Luceño's offer exceeded that of antigen tests, gloves and masks that they finally sold. “They are going to supply the best quality masks (1 million), gloves (2 million), gowns, suits, goggles and thermometers.” "We will even receive material that they are going to donate to the Puerta de Hierro Hospital (where Alberto's wife works)," Collado assures the mayor's right hand in full confinement and in a message that he sends to his direct mail.
This reference to the absence of commissions in dealing with Medina and Luceño is reflected in yet another email. A day later, Elena Collado sends to various positions in the Madrid City Council a table with the possible purchases of sanitary material, among which she reflects that of the two defendants. "They do not charge commission," says the box.
These messages have been delivered to the judge of the case masks this morning by Matilde García Duarte during her appearance as a witness before Judge Carretero. During the same, García Duarte has admitted that she spoke directly with the commissioner Medina, so he would not only have come into contact with Mayor Almeida's cousin but also reached the highest collaborator of the alderman.
Matilde Garcia Duarte He has defended that his conversations with the commission agent focused on accepting the offer and informing him that when he made it, the State was the only one authorized to acquire material. He has even described his telephone conversation with Luis Medina as "insignificant", according to legal sources.
During his testimony, he has also affirmed to the judge on several occasions that Elena Collado, budget coordinator, told him that Luceño and Medina had renounced the commissions or that, directly, they were not going to collect them. It is the first time that a witness in this case explains to the judge in the mask case that the possibility that the two defendants received a commission was already on the table in March 2020. All the witnesses who dealt with Luceño and Medina in those weeks They have assured before the judge that at no time did they know anything about possible commissions.
“I never told the mayor that his cousin called me”
The judge agreed to summon the coordinator of the mayor's office after receiving all the documentation from the Madrid City Council. Matilde García was the person with whom the commission agent Luis Medina contacted at the indication of the mayor's cousin, Carlos Martinez-Almeida. He did it through the mayor's office coordination mail to which the offers of medical supplies were then sent.
In her statement, Matilde García has completely disassociated the mayor, José Luis Martínez-Almeida, from the contact that she, general coordinator of the Mayor's Office, had with the commission agent Medina. "I never told the mayor that his cousin had called me," said Almeida's right-hand man, according to sources present in the statement.
All the witnesses linked to the Madrid City Council, for now, have declared that the alderman was not informed of the contact they had with Luis Medina before beginning the negotiations with Elena Collado. In any case, he has specified, he does not know whether or not Almeida was aware of the contract for the acquisition of material from Luceño and Medina, despite the fact that this involved the largest outlay for the Consistory.
Regarding the "safe-conduct" that the mayor signed so that the material from Luceño and Medina arrived in Spain, García Duarte told the judge that it was done in more cases because the merchandise was detained at the airports and that with this type of letter, larger quantities were acquired. “guarantees” that the material would continue on its way.
García Duarte has specified that, before passing the witness to Collado, she only spoke with Medina and never spoke of prices and that she never spoke of this matter with the mayor. This contract, he said, was managed like the others and he has defended Elena Collado and her "impeccable career", to questions from the parties, although he has discharged all responsibility for the contracting process on the then City Council Budget Coordinator.
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