CONFISCATIONS/ Confiscated assets

The goal was to seize the TV channels pertaining to the Isaias Group to create a state propaganda machine


On July 8, 2008, Raphael Correa’s regime confiscated more than 900 assets, including businesses, real estate and media outlets pertaining to the Isaias Group. It was an illegal and political act, not carried out as specified by law, through an Audit of Financial Statements but, rather a simple report of Agreed Procedures prepared by Deloitte & Touche. Furthermore, said report had not been updated in seven years.


The confiscations lacked a judicial sentence and were carried out based on alleged accusations made at trial but in the absence of a judge’s ruling. That is why they forced the approval of the obsolete report from the Banking Board in the absence of any document that could legally uphold the confiscations.


The country had been falsely told that the confiscations were sought to favor the depositors. The main objective was to seize control of the TV channels-TC, and CN3-Gamavision that in addition to the already existing state media would allow the regime to establish massive media coverage for its political gains.


Another irregularity was that the confiscations were carried out based on forged minutes of the Board of the AGD which caused the then finance minister, Fausto Ortiz, to denounce the incident and resign from office. That was how Correa seized assets valued at more than 1 billion US dollars. He directed the operation and it was executed by Carlos Bravo, Juan Falconi’s trusted friend.  Like all confiscations it was executed without prior analysis as to the value of assets and without any judicial ruling on the financial responsibility of the accused. There was no confiscation process or previous asset appraisals.


Correa also used his parliamentary majority to shield the perpetrators, accomplices and accessories from the illegal act. The Constituent Assembly immediately issued Mandate 13 in an effort to quickly validate and protect by decree the confiscation and to deny the Isaias the right to a defense. Mandate 13 also threatens any judge who accepts a hearing or an appeal on this case with removal from the bench and criminal prosecution. The Constitutional Court has also prevented the review of the constitutionality of this act.

Some of the confiscated businesses and their losses
TC Television y Gamavision

The underlying purpose of the seizure was to gain control of the Isaias Group’s channels, TC Television, CNE3 and Gamavision in order to use them as the basis of the state propaganda apparatus to which Ecuador is now subjected to. The confiscated media outlets gave the correista regime access to approximately 45% of the national media coverage that is routinely used to praise and deify the image of Correa, as a propaganda platform for his party and government, and to constantly attack and insult the Isaias brothers, the independent media, journalists, dissidents and generally anyone who disagrees with the regime, without any right to reply.

Correa promoted the sale of 22% of the shares of Gamavision and 12% of the shares of TC Television to the employees of those channels. Correa’s demagogic confabulation consisted of selling packages of shares that did not interest anyone. This occurred because, Correa concocted the current Article 312 of the Constitution which states that media owners cannot own any other kind of business; this means that if these employees would invest the income made at the channel in another kind of business venture they would be breaking the law. What Correa was really doing was locking down the sale of the television channels so that no businessman could buy them, since in doing so the latter would be obligated to sell his companies in order to venture into the media business.  This absurdity only served to avoid the dismantling of his state propaganda machine. Sobre estos medios hay un total secretísimo oficial y nadie rinde cuentas al país.There is absolute official secrecy concerning the confiscated media outlets and no official accountability reports have been given to the country.
CN3 Cablenoticias

CN3 is a cable channel dedicated to the production of news, sports and entertainment programs for television, with several leading brands; such as Cabledeportes and Cablenoticias. A lot of the programming on CN3 were programs focusing on interviews and debates on political and economic issues.  These programs are still on the air today for those who tow the government party line and all opposition are banned from airing their views.

TVCable

The Isaias group had a 35.48% shareholding of this cable operator, the largest in the country, According to press reports, the business group Hersalbar Holding SA acquired 35.48%, with an initial selling price that was dramatically and unjustifiably reduced.

According to an article published in the newspaper El Universo, on July 29, 2011, it stated "the envelopes containing the bids were opened yesterday in Guayaquil and Hersalbal made the best economic proposal offering 61,463,387 USD for Cable TV (...) the initial price of the package for 35.48% of the shares of TV Cable was USD 72.051,433 but fell after three attempts ... ". The loss on the sale of the shares that was seized from the Isaias group (35.48%) was $10,588,046 USD.

 

Radios Súper K 800 y Carrousel

Super K was the highest rated sports station in the country. It had the best professionals. Radio Carrousel was one of the flagship stations of Guayaquil. Today the fate of the two radio stations is unknown. Similarly, like the rest of the other confiscated businesses, the new managers do not want to give any information on ratings or income.

Editorial UMINASA

UMINASA became the country’s second largest publishing company under the administration of Isaias group. It published newspapers like La Razon and El Hincha as well as several magazines, like La Onda and La Otra.

Ingenio La Troncal / Ecudos

This is probably the most significant case of government corruption. It is a holding company comprised of ten companies (Ecudos, PODEC, Esdestiva, Persol, Pracmax, Agriflorsa, Defaxcorza, Sacorpen, Broxcel and Chimsa) mainly dedicated to the production of sugar and its derivatives.

According to the audit hired by the AGD at the time of the confiscation its value was $238,571,551.00 USD. However, three years later 70% of its shares were auctioned off for $ 133,810,870.00, in other words they lost $33,189,210.00 USD of their original value.

The buyer was the Gloria Group from Peru that in the words of Pedro Delgado, manager of the companies seized from the Isaias group, was one of the largest in Latin America, with annual sales of around 3 billion USD. However, in spite of being so economically powerful, the Gloria Group purchased it with a loan from the CFN financing 90% of the purchase price. The Peruvian buyers only paid 10% in cash ($ 13 million) with the remainder to be paid in fifteen years with credit from the Ecuadorian state itself and at a preferential rate of 5%; a true bargain.

A year after the sale of the sugar mill, amid the reelection campaign of Correa, the government agency ANDES reported that another 12.4% of the shares of Ecudos group had been sold to the employees of said company for $ 23,582,872.00 USD losing 5,879,232.00 USD of the original value. In conclusion, instead of profiting with the sale of 82.4% of the shares of Ecudos the government squandered $ 39,068,442.00 USD. All of these anomalies were ratified by the State Comptroller General who determined that the very rules designed by the government of Rafael Correa were broken in the transaction concerning the sale of the confiscated businesses.

EICA

This was the first company of the Isaias Group, a symbol of prosperity and the hard work of Emilio Isaias, its founder. EICA was one of the most recognized companies in Ecuador which sold heavy machinery.

Thanks to its prestige over the years it had obtained the representation of the world’s best brands. When it was confiscated by the government of Rafael Correa it was valued at $40,361,550.00 USD. However, its image began to deteriorate in state hands.  

The first scandal to surface was the noncompliance of 33 contracts with the state itself, more reports appeared afterwards, such as sale of useless vests for the National Transit Agency, among others.

Due to all the irregularities, corruption and mismanagement, the Correa government had no choice but to reduce the price to almost 6 times less than its value prior to the seizure, which was $ 7.2 million USD.  This was based on official sources and published in late 2012 by the newspaper El Comercio.

Maxigraf

This company is another example of government corruption in the administration of confiscated assets. Maxigraf was one of the largest printing companies in Ecuador and had four fully equipped installations around the country: in Guayaquil, Quito, Duran and Mapasingue. It had the most modern machinery, a solid image built on years of work and an impeccable career.

It was valued by the AGD in $5,954,661.00 USD and was bankrupted during the Correista administration. Today there is no money to pay for the employee’s settlements that have persisted for years with stand-ins, strikes and protests. Thanks to press releases the corruption at the hands of the government administration has been made public: such as exorbitant salaries, inadequate purchases, excessive staffing among other things. The whereabouts of the machinery is unknown and its current value is zero.

Servientrega

This was a courier company that operated in 72 cities of the country, 99 points of sales and the capacity to make 14 million deliveries. In 2006 its sales represented 16% of the field. It had a strategic alliance with Western Union and ranked number two in the nation, surpassed only by DHL. This company was sold for $3,405,000. USD, much below market value, yet nobody knows the destination of the proceeds from the sale.

Seguros Rocafuerte

This company managed two branches of insurance.  One was life and health insurance and the other was general insurance which had a large participation in the nation’s corporate field. It was renowned in the field and had one of the best professional teams. After the confiscation policies decreased, clients cancelled policies and several professionals have left the company.

In the Duzac-Cofiec corruption case, where those involved were Pedro Delgado and his brother-in-law Francisco Endara, they intended on using Seguro Rocafuerte shares as a guarantee for the illegal $800,000 USD loan.

PetroManabí

This is more blatant proof of the corruption of the so called government’s citizen revolution. According to the AGD, at the time of the seizure its value was 34.4 million USD. However, official documents proved that there was an additional $23 million USD in the corporate account ready to be distributed as profit.

After the confiscation, the profits were transferred in cash to accounts at Filanbanco.  According to documents and statements made by Pedro Delgado, Petromanabi’s money was used to pay those depositors of La Previsora and Previsora National Bank a total of $4,946,318.00, but what happened to the remaining $ 18,053,682.00 has never been explained. When asked by the Court in Florida in the lawsuit filed by Ecuador against the Isaias to clarify this issue Delgado gave no explanation.

Hotel Ramada

This hotel, located along the river front in downtown Guayaquil, now serves as a place to host tributes for questionable government officials.

In the case of the Hotel Ramada, the value of the hotel set by the AGD was $7,096,152.00 USD.  However, the Ramada was inexplicably sold at only $5,278,917.00 USD generating a loss of $ 1,817,235.00 USD.

Multicom

They began operations in 1995 at the height of the mobile phone boom in Ecuador.

Multicom formed a joint venture with the giant Motorola to work together in the mobile market that was beginning to emerge in the country. Multicom grew to have 9000 users across the country and was the leader of the national market at the time.  At the time of the confiscation, more than 10 registered trademarks were seized being intangible assets belonging to Multicom.

Covactiva

This was the real estate brokerage firm of the Isaias Group. The government holds approximately 520 properties that include houses, apartments, suites, stores, hangars, warehouses, parking lots, land and even suites in the sport stadiums such as Liga Deportiva Universitaria, Barcelona and Emelec.


For the lease of these properties, Covactiva collected monthly approximately $70,000 USD, this amount should be much higher now.   Multiplying this figure by six years of government administration, the Correa regime has received more than five million US dollars. Where is that money?

Budget

This automobile rental company was valued at $ 5,568,662.00 by the AGD, but inexplicably sold for only $ 2,800,000.00 USD according to the accountability report presented by Pedro Delgado in December 2011. In this case the loss caused by the administration of the UGEDEP was $ 2,768,662.00 USD.

Vehículos y yates

As part of the regime’s media circus and to politically justify the confiscation, there were unprecedented exhibitions of yachts and the car collection confiscated from the Isaias held at various fairs and events. The propaganda machine controlled by the Correista regime used it to manipulate public opinion, making it seem that the Isaias brothers were guilty of the financial crisis which occurred at the end of the last century and that these yachts and vehicles were acquired by the alleged assault of the depositors’ money.

A total of 50 vehicles were confiscated, according to Pedro Delgado’s accountability report, 37 classic cars were auctioned off for $1,090,900.00 USD. That means that each confiscated vehicle sold for an average price of less than $30,000.00. We must take into account that the seized cars had brands such as Rolls Royce, Cadillac, Porsche, Jaguar, Mercedes Benz, Audi, Alfa Romeo, and Ford among others. The two yachts that were confiscated were donated to the Navy at Santa Elena as part of the demagogic propaganda act of the regime.


 



VIDEO: What seizure?
Correa simula desconocer las confiscaciones
VIDEO: Conversation
Correa gives instructions to Carlos Bravo (AGD) to seize assets
VIDEO: Seizure of TC
Bravo makes offers to workers to avoid resistanse
VIDEO: The seizure
News coverage by Ecuavisa
VIDEO: Fausto Ortiz
The board of the AGD, did not authorize de seizure
VIDEO:Rafael Correa
"The government is a poor administrator of assets"" / Correa / Enlace Nacional


1. Resolution AGD-UIO-GG-2008-012.pdf

2. Resolution AGD-UIO-GG-2Q08-18.pdf

3. Resolution AGD-UIO-GG-2008-18-A.pdf

4. Resolution AGD-UIO-GG-2008-19.pdf

5. Resolution AGD-UIO-GG-2008-21.pdf

6. Resolution AGD-UIO-GG-2008-23.pdf

7. Resolution AGD-UIO-GG-2008-26.pdf

8. Resolution AGD-UIO-GG-2008-0034.pdf

9. Resolution AGD-UIO-GG-2008-035 CARTERA PATRIMONIO.pdf
10. Resolución AGD-UIO-GG-2008-063.pdf

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