February 28, 2021

The judge of the Villarejo case suspects that "the dome" of BBVA agreed to hire the ex-commissioner

The judge of the Tandem case, Manuel García Castellón, suspects that "the dome" of BBVA consented to the hiring of former commissioner José Villarejo for information and espionage tasks, in view of the "personal and business benefit" that could be reported.

In a fragment of the imputation order to BBVA to which Efe had access, the magistrate sees it necessary determine if the bank implemented measures to prevent crime or if, on the contrary, "the absence of control mechanisms" and "tolerance with practices contrary to good business faith" were "means that the bank could have used to facilitate the hiring" of Villarejo.

►FG: the most sullen and distrustful banker, cornered by the imputation of BBVA

►The judge imputes BBVA in the Villarejo case

All this, says the judge, allegedly "consented to by the dome of the bank itself" for "personal and business benefit" that would be reported by those services of the ex-commissioner.

The judge imputes the bank bribery crimes – since Villarejo was an active policeman when he worked for BBVA and got him information-, secret discovery and disclosures – for that confidential information that he provided – and of corruption in business – for the gifts that one of its executives allegedly received from Villarejo.

In the case of this last crime, García Castellón will investigate his journey to clarify whether BBVA contributed to maintaining relations with Villarejo for his own benefit or if the alleged corruption of any of its executives "could be considered as harmful to society."

For the time being, the judge has refused to accept the bank's request to appear as an injured person, waiting to clarify if he benefited from the contracts with Villarejo and if he did not apply the necessary controls "thus allowing" the personal corruption of his managers "and" practices that could be contrary to the interest "of BBVA.

For this reason, it considers "necessary" its imputation for corruption in business in this initial state of the investigation, so that the entity can declare in the case with the guarantees offered by the condition of imputed or investigated and it can be determined if it effectively put in march the mechanisms of crime prevention ("compliance").

This is one of the requirements established in article 31 bis of the Criminal Code, which the judge cites in his car, to impute to a legal person: that he benefits directly or indirectly from the crimes and that no measures have been put in place crime control.

Apart from the bank, the judge has imputed a dozen directors and former directors of the entity, including Ángel Cano, former CEO; Julio Corrochano, former chief of security of BBVA and former general commissioner of the Judicial Police, and Antonio Béjar, former director of Risks and Real Estate Recoveries who is collaborating with the judge.

They are investigated in piece number 9 of the Tandem case on the hiring of several million of the bank to Cenyt, a company of the ex-commissioner who allegedly had spied about 15,000 phone calls from politicians, journalists, bankers and businessmen.

Their accusations have occurred at the request of the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office, which investigates the contracting of the bank to Villarejo since 2004, when the construction company Sacyr began a movement to try to take control of the banking group, which finally was unsuccessful. These contracts were extended until 2017.

The investigations in the Villarejo case resulted in the resignation in March of Francisco González as honorary president, after having left in December to preside over the entity.

. (tagsToTranslate) larazon.es

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