Operation Coral 5G arraignments set for Thursday, 26 November 2021

Kenya Romero / Hoy

Judge Kenya Romero in charge of the first hearing of the new Operation Coral 5G government corruption case postponed the arraignment for Thursday, 26 November 2021.

Meanwhile, the Special Prosecution of Administrative Corruption (Pepca) has again shared with the press the long accusatory file for the Operation Coral 5G. The case is a sequel of the government corruption case named Operation Coral in which the former head of the Presidential Security Corps (Cusep), Major General Adan Caceres was sent to preventive custody accused of corruption in office. Both cases present evidence of irregular use of government funds for personal expenses, and the padding of the public payroll and fuel purchases for personal profit. The Pepca maintains that the military used their positions and influence in government and created companies, avoided audits with fictitious accounts, took possession of seized assets as their own and destroyed and fabricated evidence to keep the network hidden, among other criminal activities.

The Operation Coral 5G is 634 pages long.

The Administrative Corruption Prosecution Office (Pepca) accuses Air Force general Juan Carlos Torres Robiou, former director of the Specialized Corps for Touristic Security (Cestur) and Air Force General Julio Camilo De los Santos Viola. Charges are also presented against Army General Boanerges Reyes Batista (ERD), Navy Captain Franklin Antonio Mata Flores (ARD), colonels Carlos Augusto Lantigua Cruz, Miguel Ventura Pichardo (Air Force) and lieutenant colonel Erasmo Roger Pérez Núñez (Air Force).

Also, charges are presented against Major José Manuel Rosario Pirón, First Lieutenant Jehohanan Lucía Rodríguez Jiménez and César Félix Ramos Ovalle.

Others awaiting arraignment in the Operation Coral 5G case are lieutenant colonel Kelman Santana Martinez, former personal assistant to the head of the Presidential Security Corps (Cusep); colonel Yehudy Blandesmil Guzman Alcantara former human resources manager of the Specialized Tourism Security Corps (Cestur), between 2014 and 2020.

Also included in the accusation is Esmeralda Ortega Polanco, manager of the branch of the Banco de Reservas in Santo Domingo East, where allegedly with her help more than 90% of the financial operations by the alleged corruption network in the Operation Coral 5G were carried out in violation of banking procedures.

N Digital and Diario Libre make the point that the wife of former Cestur director, Torres Robiou, Greybby María Cuello Coste has not yet been arrested despite serious accusations against her in the Operation Coral 5G file. She is accused of repeating the fraudulent scheme of payroll fraud and diversion of funds for personal profit when appointed to the government’s children protection agency Conani from April to August 2020. Coste Cuello is described as a person who previous to the Conani appointment had already been a close aide to President Danilo Medina working at the Presidential Palace.

At a time when the Abinader administration has expressed the need for more taxes, an editorial in El Dia on 22 November 2021 highlights that the Coral cases make apparent the lack of controls to avoid wasteful spending in government. “In the name of national security or public security in the military and the National Police there is a lack of control that enables the happening of cases such as these that are now being heard in court,” writes the editorialist.

The Coral operations are now in the open at a time when the Minister of Defense has lobbied for the reinstatement of military courts to hear criminal cases of the military in the Penal Code bill under study in Congress. The military courts are included in the version of the Penal Code that has already passed a first reading in the Senate.

Read more:
Acento: The complete 634 page file
Listin Diario
Diario Libre
El Dia
N Digital
El Caribe
N Digital
N Digital
El Caribe
El Nacional
Diario Libre
Somos Pueblo
Diario Libre
Diario Libre
Altagracia Salazar sin Maquillaje

22 November 2021