Two remodeling and construction company owners and five former Puerto Rico government employees with the Surperintendent of the Capitol Office were indicted on 73 counts of fraud and corruption.
By H. Nelson Goodson
August 15, 2015
San Juan, Puerto Rico – On Friday, the Puerto Rico Public Ministry and the Department of Justice reported that Edil Danois Román and his wife, Elena Cuervo Sierra owners of Restoura Contractors, Inc. and Fasan Construction, Corp. along with five former employees from the Superintendent of the Capitol Office, Finance Director Juan Carlos Acosta Ramírez, Álex E. Martínez Morales, an engineer and head of projects, Endel Rodríguez Cortés, Jamilette Ramírez Sánchez and Gladys Alberti Torres were criminally indicted with a combined 73 counts for fraud, misappropriation of private and government funds, not conducting open bidding for construction and modeling contracts of government buildings and corruption. Román alone was charged with 31counts of fraud for false contract bidding and filing false documents to get awarded government contracts. The defendants bail was set at $100 per criminal count each.
According to the indictment, the defendants conspired to commit fraud by filing low contract bids, which were processed as a scheme to defraud the Puerto Rico government of $2.9M from 2010 to 2012.
An audit by the Superintendent of the Capitol and Contollers Office discovered the fraud scheme.
Puerto Rico has a $58M debt with bank bond creditors and is facing a $72B government deficit today. In early August, the Puerto Rico Government Development Bank reported that it paid $260K on the bank creditor debt and defaulted on the debt when it did not make a required payment.