The lawyers of three of the defendants in the alleged fixes in the General Plan of Alicante have stated that the facts are prescribed for them. The accusations link businessman Pablo Rico, Enrique Ortiz’s brother, Virgilio, and Santiago Bernaldez, an employee of the promoter, with the cash deliveries to former Alicante mayor Luis Díaz Alperi. Both Virgilio and Bernaldez were two of the defendants who closed an agreement with the Prosecutor’s Office shortly before the trial, which they later retracted. On the bench, in addition to the promoter, sit among others the city’s exalts, Sonia Castedo and Luis Díaz Alperi. The trial is in its final stretch with the reports of conclusions from the parties.
The defense of Bernaldez and Virgilio, Alejandro Bas, has stated that more than six years passed since the events allegedly occurred until they were charged by the court. The prosecutor asks for a year and a half in jail for Bernaldez and Virgilio Ortiz, while for Pablo Rico six months. However, the lawyers have made it clear that their position is that there is no proof of the facts that are attributed to their victims. “They are interpretations of wiretaps, without any kind of proof,” said Sigfrido Gomis, Pablo Rico’s defense attorney.
However, a large part of the Bernaldez and Virgilio Ortiz defense report has focused on attacking the legality of the wiretapping on which the case is based and has questioned the work of the Prosecutor’s Office. Bas has influenced the circumstances in which in his day, the Orihuela court investigating the Brugal Case sent a separate piece to another Alicante court to investigate alleged irregularities regarding the Rabasa Plan. The Alicante magistrate denied the intervention of Enrique Ortiz’s telephone and filed the case for not seeing evidence of a crime. In that interim period, the Orihuela court authorized the wiretapping of Enrique Ortiz’s phone due to irregularities in the Zonal Plan. Bas has influenced that the Oriolano court continued investigating that another judicial body had filed in Alicante. Likewise, it has also questioned the recordings with which the businessman Ángel Fenoll launched the investigation of the Brugal case. Bas stressed that the purpose of these tapes was to blow up the Orihuela City Council’s garbage award contest. “They were recordings with spurious moods and in order to extort money from other municipal representatives,” he said. In his view, “the first kick to this procedure is flawed with a null test.”
This morning’s session began with the report of the private accusations in the PGOU. “Information is power and in the case of the General Plan, information is money”, this is how the lawyer José María López Coig has concluded his report, who exercises the private prosecution in the case of the alleged manipulations of the PGOU on behalf of the Alicante City Council . The lawyer has insisted that the PGOU of Alicante could not get ahead due to the media scandal in this case and that it was the manipulations of the accused that prevented the planning from going ahead. López Coig has insisted that in the processing of a general plan, all owners must be treated in the same way and that precisely the reserved nature of these procedures is the tool that is used to avoid speculation.
Along the same lines, Esquerra Unida’s lawyer, José Luis Romero, who exercises popular action, has asked the magistrate to assess whether the defendants acted to defend the general interests or to satisfy the interests of an individual. Romero has insisted that the action of the Alicante City Council during the processing of the General Plan was to benefit the businessman Enrique Ortiz, placing emphasis on the Rico Pérez Interior Reform Plan and the interests of the developer in the Agua Amarga area.
The US attorney has asked the magistrates to conscientiously assess the agreement they reached with the Prosecutor’s Office and the accusations before the trial of businessman Enrique Ortiz, his brother Virgilio and Santiago Bernaldez and from which they later retracted. “The three confess in the letter they signed that the facts are true and that would be meaningless if it were not real, except that they were spurred on by the ruling of the Elche Court, throwing the fourth swords of the nullity of the wiretaps.”
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