The Secretary of Communication of the Presidency, Andrés Michelena, said that Fernando Alvarado escaped without responding to 11 reports with indications of criminal responsibility, prepared by the Comptroller General of the State. Mostly, for alleged embezzlement.
Four reports are related to the management of two seized media: Gamatv and TC Televisión. The investigations point to Alvarado’s salary increase to managers without the respective justifications and payments to officials before they are appointed to their posts.
Even, disbursements are registered for the payment of leases of the managers of these media. Irregularities are also reported in contracts that were made with creative agencies, whose shareholders would be linked to relatives of the former Secretary of Communication. This happened when Alvarado was delegated by the former President Rafael Correa Media Management Unit.
Other reports analyzed the hiring of technical services, consultancies and commission payments, without the corresponding livelihoods. The Comptroller’s Office carried out four other special control examinations for Alvarado. Among them, highlights the document that analyzed the expenses generated, resources used and recruitment processes for the production of citizen or Saturday links, between June 2013 and May 2017.
Andrés Michelena said that on October 11, they requested the Attorney General’s Office General of the State that initiate proceedings of repetition against the officials responsible for the management of public and seized media, mainly, against Fernando Alvarado.
The Government presumes, in addition, the announcement of Pablo Yánez, former Secretary of Communication, to collaborate as a protected witness of the Prosecutor’s Office in the investigation against Alvarado is another of the factors that led to the escape of the former Secretary of Communication of the Correa Government.
For that reason, Michelena exhorted the administration of justice to provide protection measures to Yánez. The authorities learned of the leak through a message from WhatsApp to the monitoring center of the 911 ECU that Alvarado reportedly sent, according to Paúl Granda, Minister of Justice.
In that message he explains that he removed the shackle on his ankle, left the country and is in transit to another nation that granted him asylum. The electronic shackle carried by the former official since August 9, 2018 did not issue any alert, after being stripped. In addition, Granda gave details of the movements of the device.
According to the authorities, last Friday morning the electronic shackle issued a signal from the Provincial Court of Guayas where it had to be presented every 15 days as part of the precautionary measures.
Later Durán, Quevedo, was mobilized, and at night he arrived in Quito. There the device has registration of mobilization by the Living Route. On Saturday, October 20, the signal of the shackle was issued from El Teleferico, the sector of the Orellana, the Quicentro Shopping, the ring of El Ciclista, until reaching the De los Conquistadores avenue.
Then the device was abandoned in a ravine of the av. Simón Bolívar, where it was located. Before the alert of the text message allegedly sent from Alvarado’s cell phone, the Interior Minister, María Paula Romo, assured that the police began looking for the device.
According to Granda, they could find the device at midnight. Although it was broken, it still emitted a signal. From that same night, the Police began the search for Fernando Alvarado and the immigration and border controls were redoubled.
Romo said he is not sure that he has left the Ecuadorian territory and added that they only have signs and suspicions. But on Saturday, Alvarado assured this newspaper, via WhatsApp, that he is no longer in the country. Romo said that possible omissions are being investigated in the intelligence services and the administration of justice.
She added that a blue Interpol alert was issued, to start the search for Alvarado in 192 countries and that as soon as they receive the order of preventive detention, they will be included in the list of the most wanted in Ecuador.
The Ministry of Justice sent the “report-non-compliance oversight” to the Office of the Prosecutor. After receiving the document, the Office of the Prosecutor asked the National Court of Justice to set a date and time for the issue to be resolved in a hearing.
In addition, it initiated a previous investigation to determine responsible for the lack of control of the shackles. The president of the Assembly, Elizabeth Cabezas, through Twitter, indicated that the Legislative Plenary will “summon the authorities responsible for the Alvarado case.”
Michelena exhorted the justice administration to prohibit the alienation of assets of Fernando Alvarado and his family. And he requested that the prohibition to leave the country be issued to former officials of the previous Government who have legal proceedings. Granda said who requested the resignation of the vice minister and the undersecretary of Justice. (I)