A hundred agents of the National Police have appeared this Thursday at the facilities of Alu Iberica in Avilés and A Coruña, as well as in offices in Madrid, Málaga and Castellón to carry out various registrations by the alleged fraudulent de-ownership of the aluminum factories, as reported by union and police sources.
According to the General Directorate of the body, the operation includes a total of 11 records in the homes of natural and legal persons, including the production centers themselves and a law firm.
The investigation, led by the Central Court of Instruction number 3 of the National Court and coordinated by the Special Prosecutor Against Corruption and Organized Crime, “It seeks to obtain evidence in order to clarify the facts and safeguard the rights of all those who may be harmed by such actions.”
More than 100 police officers from different specialties of the central and territorial organization of the General Police Directorate, as well as members of the Labor and Social Security Inspectorate.
Until the Avilesina factory, previously owned by Alcoa, they have moved around 9:00 a.m. five vans with agents from the Economic and Fiscal Crime Unit (UDEF), that they have inspected all the facilities of the plant and have asked the employees to stop working and be at their request, according to the president of the Works Council, José Manuel Gómez de la Uz.
The record would be related to the complaint filed by the Confederation of Staff and Professionals (CCP) against Alcoa and eighteen other natural and legal persons for alleged irregularities in the sale of the company’s plants in Avilés and A Coruña that could be constitutive of asset hoisting and fraud, and that last December she was admitted by the National High Court.
In 2019, Alcoa sold its plants in Avilés and A Coruña to the Swiss investment fund Parter Capital, after a long process that began at the end of 2018 when the American multinational announced its intention to close the two factories.
The company then justified its decision in the high electricity costs in Spain, the need to make large investments and the difficult situation in the aluminum markets.
Nevertheless, It didn’t take long for Parter Capital to divest itself of the two Alcoa plants, which were acquired by Grupo Industrial Riesgo already under the name of Alu Ibérica, without previously informing the Ministry of Industry or the regional governments and the representation of the workforce, who accuse the new owner of lacking a solvent industrial project.
According to the CCP, which amounts to 688 the number of workers employed In the La Coruña and Avilés centers, Alcoa allegedly deceived the unions in the framework of the collective dismissal negotiations, which began at the end of 2018.
The brief of the complaint relates the sale process and concludes that “the defendants have led to the ownership of the two factories ending up in the hands of shell companies without the capacity to carry out the business plan, or the payment of wages, or the investment, thereby frustrating the final objective of the negotiation, the safeguarding of jobs. ”
The holder of the central court of instruction number 3, María Tardón, explained in an order dated February 12, by which she rejected the appeal of a defendant, that in a “procedurally so early moment” it is not possible to state whether or not there was a criminal act; what the instruction is about is precisely “to check whether its existence can be definitively excluded”.
From the Works council of the Avilesina plant, the satisfaction of the workers has been expressed for the judicial intervention to try to clarify the alleged de-patrimonialization of the plants, although they have insisted on the need for the Ministry of Industry to take new steps to reverse the transfer of the plants and guarantee their future.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.