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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Cataño mayor asks Justice Dept. to expand corruption charges

By The Star Staff

Cataño Mayor Julio Alicea Vasallo sent a letter to Justice Secretary Domingo Emanuelli Hernández requesting that more people involved be included in recently filed corruption lawsuits.

Alicea Vasallo was referring to 15 lawsuits announced by the Justice Department based on Law No. 2 of Jan. 4, 2018, known as the “Anti-Corruption Code for the New Puerto Rico.”

“Yesterday, you, in your capacity as Secretary of Justice and on behalf of the Department you lead, announced the filing of 15 lawsuits before the Court of First Instance of San Juan, with the purpose of recovering public funds and damages caused by more than 30 [individuals] convicted of corruption by the people of Puerto Rico,” Alicea Vasallo said in his letter.

The mayor pointed out that he noticed the absence in the lawsuits of certain officials and contractors related to acts of corruption in Cataño. Among those were: Pedro Marrero Miranda, a former director of public works under the administration of former Catano mayor Félix Delgado Montalvo, who pleaded guilty to a bribery scheme with the company J.R. Asphalt Inc.; José L. Bou Santiago and his corporation, Bou Maintenance Services, Corp., which obtained a contract in 2019 to provide roofing services in La Esperanza Park, mediating bribes and kickbacks between the then-mayor and Bou, who pleaded guilty in federal court; and Island Builders Corp., owned by Óscar Santamaría Torres, who made cash payments to Delgado Montalvo to obtain contracts in favor of Island Builders.

Alicea Vasallo asked the Justice Department to file lawsuits against the aforementioned natural and legal persons to recover the illegally obtained funds.

“Puerto Rico and the municipality I lead deserve nothing less,” he said.

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