The judge of the National Court, Manuel García Castellón, has agreed in the framework of the investigation of Operation Tandem the summons as investigated of Repsol SA and Caixbank SA as legal persons for the crimes of bribery and disclosure of secrets for their alleged participation in the hiring of retired commissioner Jose Manuel Villarejo to carry out an investigation on the president of Sacyr, Luis del Rivero, and his surroundings. The judge’s decision comes after the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office requested on Wednesday his indictment for the alleged espionage that both companies would have commissioned Cenyt, Villarejo’s company, to investigate Del Rivero, for his relationship with the Mexican oil company Pemex to become with the control of Repsol.
The judge requires Repsol and Caixabank to appoint a representative, as well as a lawyer and solicitor to carry out the appearance in which the representatives of the two companies will be informed of the facts attributed to them. Once said appearance has been held, the head of the Central Investigative Court 6 summons the representative appointed by Repsol SA and by Caixabank SA to take a statement on July 26 at ten o’clock in the morning. It should be remembered that the former president of Caixabank, Isidro Fainé, and the president of Repsol, Antonio Brufau, are already indicted in the case.
In a car, García Castellón indicates that at this time of the investigation carried out within the framework of separate piece number 21 it is incidentally proven that both companies, through their security officers, carried out a direct order to Villarejo, when he was in active duty in the National Police Corps to investigate Luis del Rivero and his environment.
Said investigation, adds the magistrate in his brief, would have been used to frustrate the pact that Luis del Rivero, through Sacyr, had reached with the Mexican company Pemex to take control of Repsol SA, a company of which Caixabank SA was a shareholder. reference. In the same way, the judge considers incidentally proven that both companies, acting jointly, accessed the traffic of telephone calls made by Luis del Rivero and people around him.
In his order, the judge collects the arguments of the two entities regarding the hiring of Villarejo, in which they claim to have carried it out “in the conviction that it was an official on leave of absence.” The report presented by Caixabank specifically states that “in no case is it known that the researcher was active when the service was commissioned”. In this regard, the judge establishes that “the lack of any verification of Mr. Villarejo’s active service as a public official constitutes another omission that requires an explanation from the two legal entities.”
The magistrate explains in his letter that in order to charge a legal person, in accordance with article 31 bis.1 of the Penal Code, it is required that the crime be committed for the direct or indirect benefit of the entity. In the specific case, the order indicates that the invoices issued by Villarejo in the execution of the investigation works commissioned were paid by Caixabank and Repsol, “showing that the actions of the investigated were carried out at all times in the name and by the company’s own account ”.
The judge appreciates doubts about the diligence used by the two entities in hiring Villarejo’s services and for this he highlights two extremes: the legality of the contracted service and the status of Jose Manuel Villarejo as a public official. Both Caixabank and Repsol at the time sent documentation in which both alluded to the legality of the hiring of the Cenyt company, justifying it in the conviction that it was private security services.
The judge appreciates a serious failure in the due diligence to verify that Cenyt was never authorized to carry out private security activities as it is a verification that can be carried out through the Central Private Security Unit of the National Police. For the magistrate, it is especially striking that this verification was not carried out when the two Repsol and Caixabank security chiefs who hired Villarejo had been, on the one hand, head of the Central Private Security Unit of the National Police (in the case of the head of Repsol) and superior chief of the Police in Galicia and Catalonia in the case of the Caixabank employee.
It adds that both, although they were not active, had to know the rank of the members of the National Police Corps to know that Jose Manuel Villarejo was working as an active police officer when the two companies investigated hired his services. García Castellón concludes that the lack of due diligence of these two companies, with an impact on the criminal outcome investigated requires, “the less the responsible entities explain in court why this situation could have occurred.”