The judge of the National Court Joaquín Elías Gadea has agreed to call the accused to testify as former head of the UDEF Manuel Vázquez, to clarify if the Police promoted or manipulated the “anonymous complaint” that led to prison the president of the Ausbanc consumer association, Luis Pineda.
As a result of this complaint, the National Court sentenced Luis Pineda to eight years in prison last July, as the author of the crimes of extortion and fraud. Pineda has appealed the sentence before the Supreme Court.
The former head of BBVA security Julio Corrochano wrote a letter to the investigating judge of Operation Tandem on October 8, in which he acknowledges that it was he who presented the “anonymous complaint” against Pineda to the General Police Station of the Judicial Police. Corrochano framed this action in the millionaire contract that BBVA signed with Cenyt, the investigation agency of the retired commissioner Jose Manuel Villarejo.
According to his statement, Corrochano filed the complaint on February 2, 2015 at the General Police Station of the Judicial Police, which a few days later, on February 13, forwarded it to the Prosecutor’s Office. Finally, the Public Ministry denounced before the National High Court in November 2015 the facts related in said letter. Thus the judicial process that led Luis Pineda to prison was set in motion.
However, the UDEF – then directed by Manuel Vázquez – contributed to the summary of the Ausbanc case documents that had been prepared a month before the presentation of the “anonymous complaint”. Among them, a certificate of the accounts of the company Ausbanc Consumo that had been issued by the Mercantile Registry on January 9, 2015 (one month before the complaint was filed) at the request of the Police.
From all this, the legal representation of Luis Pineda interprets that the BBVA contract with the investigative agency of Commissioner Villarejo was intended, among other purposes, to collect information and fabricate the complaint against the president of Ausbanc.
And it also maintains that UDEF commanders acted in collusion with Villarejo to pursue this objective, since they were already inspecting Ausbanc’s accounts a month before the presentation of the complaint, which allowed them to make the investigation official.
In a letter addressed to the judge of Operation Tandem, Luis Pineda’s defense argues that “the anonymous complaint was part of the plan commissioned by BBVA” to Commissioner Villarejo to destroy the president of Ausbanc, since this consumer association had denounced the clauses Abusive land included in mortgage contracts that were finally annulled by the Supreme Court.
In light of these data, Pineda’s defense asked the investigating judge of the Tandem case to take a statement from various UDEF commanders to clarify whether they acted in collusion with Villarejo to promote the anonymous complaint.
The magistrate Joaquin Elías Gadea (who acts as a reinforcement judge of the Central Court of Instruction number 6 of the National High Court) has now agreed to summon the former head of the UDEF Manuel Vázquez as investigated, in order to clarify his participation in these events.
In an order issued last Monday, the investigating judge clarifies that “we are in a border area between the testimony as a witness and as investigated, since the answers provided by the deponent can be self-incriminating“.
“If he is summoned as a witness,” the judge explains in his car, “he is obliged to swear or promise to tell the truth, and to answer all the questions put to him. In this case, if any self-incriminating answer arises, he would have to stop. the statement and restart it, attributing the status of investigated, so that he was assisted by legal defense, and in which condition he could avail himself of his right not to testify, or to answer the one or those questions that he deems appropriate, in accordance with the best defense of his rights and interests “.
Does not anticipate “guilt”
Faced with this dilemma, the magistrate has finally chosen to summon the former head of the UDEF as being investigated, to “guarantee his right to defense and that the statement is given with full guarantees and respect for his procedural rights.”
But he emphasizes in his resolution that “the attribution of the status of investigated in the investigation phase does not carry an advance plea of guilt rather, in the presence of evidence of a crime, a subject is summoned in such capacity to provide his version of the facts investigated. “