The municipality of El Copey could be left without a mayor for the remainder of the electoral period. The Prosecutor’s Office requested that the president of that municipality, Francisco Meza Altamar, be sent to prison for allegedly favoring with contracts two companies that were owned by him and his brother.
These are the companies Fundación para el Desarrollo Social y Productivo, Fundicop, in which the mayor was the owner, manager and legal representative, and Servicios Integrales del Caribe, Sicarcol SAS, which was established by his brother.
The president withdrew from Fundicop, in 2018, just before starting his run to be elected as mayor, but once he succeeded, he signed a contract with that same company in March 2022 for $269,353,160. .
While with Sicarcol SAS the mayor made 11 contracts between 2020 and 2022 of different amounts that in total exceeded $3,000 million.
A PURCHASE AND SALE
The contract for which the investigation began is a purchase and sale contract that involved the Municipal Mayor’s Office and the two companies.
According to the Prosecutor’s Office, on March 12, 2019, a citizen sold a property to Fundicop for $21,500,000, and later the El Copey Mayor’s Office declared it of social interest, asking that the land be legalized.
Similarly, the Mayor’s Office hired a person for its commercial appraisal, who indicated that the property is valued at $6,250,589,328.
The curious thing is that Fundicop sold the property to Sicarcol SAS for $50,000,000. and this in turn, after some previous studies, sold it to the municipality for $600,000,000.
In the investigation, they determined that Sicarcol SAS was first established as YMK Ltda. by Yesenia Ordoñez and Marciano de Jesús Meza Altamar, brother of the mayor.
However, the company changed its name to Servicios Integrales del Caribe, Sicarcol SAS One of the owner shareholders was Belkis Leonor Jiménez Nieves, who by means of an act dated September 26, 2019, assigned 100% of its shares to Antonio María Andrade Zambrano, appointed as a manager, and close to the mayor’s family.
Belkis Leonor Jiménez became the municipality’s Secretary of Social Inclusion, Culture, Sports and Recreation, but later left office and became a candidate for the Mayor’s Office of El Copey.
Consequently, the Prosecutor’s Office charged the mayor Francisco Meza, the former secretary Belkis Jiménez and the contractor Antonio Andrade for the crimes of conspiracy to commit a crime and undue interest in entering into a contract, but the contractor for this last crime, as an accomplice. None accepted charges.
Likewise, the Prosecutor’s Office argued that it was necessary for the mayor to be sent to prison, while the others were detained at their place of residence.
Raúl Hernández, the mayor’s lawyer, for his part, asked that they not impose a measure on Francisco Meza.
“He (the Prosecutor’s Office) resorted to generalizations and vagueness, not being his exposition circumstantiated in manner, time and place as required by law, he did not do it,” said Hernández.