The Public Prosecutor’s Office requests between 8 and 5 and a half years in prison, also for the contracts of a ski resort
MADRID, 6 (EUROPEAN PRESS)
The National Court (AN) begins Thursday the trial of the piece of the “Púnica case” linked to León and for which the supposed “director” of the plot, the businessman Alejandro de Pedro, sits on the bench of the ‘accused, as well as two former officials of the People’s Party of this province, the former president of the Diputación Martín Marcos Martínez and the former chief of staff Pedro Vicente Sánchez.
They face sentences ranging from 8 to 5 and a half years in prison for the work and online reputation advice of Martín Marcos, and for the awarding of contracts for the San Isidro ski resort.
For these facts, the former inspector of the Diputación Manuel Jesús López Sánchez is also accused; the former mayor of Cartagena José Antonio Alonso Conesa and an employee of De Pedro, Guadalupe Caballero, in addition to the companies that developed the book, Eico Online and Madiva Editorial, which allegedly received some 90,000 euros in public funds irregularly .
In its indictment, collected by Europa Press, the prosecution claims for Martín Marcos, former president of the Diputación and current mayor of the municipality of Cuadros as an independent, the heaviest sentence, 8 years in prison, for crimes of embezzlement with lies, fraud and influence peddling.
On the other hand, for Manuel Jesús López and Pedro Vicente Sánchez, who was coordinator of the press office of the Diputación and today mayor of Puebla de Lillo with an independent party, he asks for 7 years, one less than Martín Marcos, since he is not accused of influence peddling.
The Public Ministry asks De Pedro and Alonso Conesa 5 and a half years in prison for embezzlement of public funds in competition with lies and fraud, while for Guadalupe Caballero it leaves his request to 3 years and five months in prison for embezzlement of public funds in false competition.
As for the companies of De Pedro, the prosecution is interested in a fine of double the advantage obtained. In addition, he asks that among the six defendants, they compensate the Provincial Council with 171,000 euros.
De Pedro and Alonso Conesa had worked since 2010 for different public administrations and together controlled a group of companies with which they applied for public contracts, “many of them with simulated objects”, according to the account of the prosecution.
NEUTRALIZE NEGATIVE NEWS
“The aim of all of this was to produce personal image campaigns that would build a positive reputation on the internet, linked to the politician’s names, which would neutralize negative news or improve his public profile,” he says in the letter.
To achieve this goal, they used dozens of digital newspapers – many of which were “zombie”, without updates – which acted as “replication engines”, “without any journalistic interest”, of positive information.
In 2012, De Pedro and Alonso Conesa captured then Provincial Council President Isabel Carrasco as a client, with whom they agreed to work to “clean up and take care” of their social media reputation, which has lasted and in which the accused later participated. .
After the death of Carrasco, assassinated in 2014, the reputation services continued with Martín Marcos as interim president of the Diputación and would have been paid in a “sneaky” way thanks to the simulation of institutional advertising hiring.
Martín Marcos was “interested in making himself known to the citizens of León, building a positive identity on social networks and receiving advice for his political promotion”, of which De Pedro and Alonso Conesa “took advantage” to clarify with him a new to plan.
DIRECT LEON PP
The agreement, according to the prosecutor’s office, provided for De Pedro and Alonso Conesa to use their political influence to support Martín Marcos’ aspirations to lead the León PP and his candidacy for the presidency of the Provincial Council in the following elections.
As advisory missions have been agreed, the editorial staff specifies it, the writing of his speeches, the follow-up of his interventions within the party and the preparation of his political agenda with the regional authorities.
And as for the award of contracts for the operation of the ski resort, the prosecution maintains that the former president of the provincial council and the comptroller Manuel Jesús López had “direct interests” in the region for the benefit of the companies of De Peter.
Likewise, he considers that Martín Marcos exerted “pressure” on the public employees of the Diputación to find a way to be able to achieve his objectives in these facilities.