Two Venezuelans Wanted Abroad Swindle Local Company out of $7.8 million
SAN JUAN – Venezuelans Francisco Javier González and Marcos Antonio da Silva face 13 counts for defrauding Betteroads Asphalt Corp., a subsidiary of Empresas Diaz, of $7.8 million.
The perpetrators conducted a false sale of 100,000 barrels of liquid asphalt, at $78 per unit, that never existed.
According to the investigation, González, owner of Venezuelan company Arevenca, and Da Silva arrived in the island, and in March 2011 registered Madasi Oil Corp., a dummy corporation, in the Puerto Rico State Department with the intention of duping Betteroads.
To get the sale, the Venezuelans presented Arevenca and Madasi Oil to Betteroads as if these were of the most important groups globally in terms of buying and selling oil.
On July 15, 2011, Betteroads made a $2 million transfer to a bank in Switzerland for Averenca as a deposit for the purchase. The local company later transferred $5.8 million on Aug. 19, 2011, to complete the purchase, after which González and Da Silva never delivered the product.
In addition, the investigation revealed the money was used by González for personal benefit. Judge Edgar Figueroa, of San Juan’s Court of First Instance, found cause to arrest him on two counts of illegal appropriation, two of fraud and five of money laundering, for a total of nine.
Da Silva was charged with two counts of illegal appropriation and two for fraud, but his whereabouts remain unknown.
González has been detained in Venezuela since May 20, following a Spanish arrest warrant against him for misappropriation and fraud. In addition, an Interpol Red Notice has been issued, as he is also listed as person of interest in Senegal and China.
The Puerto Rico Justice Department will refer an extradition request to the U.S. Justice Department, which has jurisdiction over international extraditions.
Bail was set at $1 million per count, for a total of $9 million against González and $4 million against Da Silva.