Accused of looting a Venezuelan oil company bought a villa in the DR

Jose Luis Zabala, who is being prosecuted for looting one of the main public energy companies in Latin America, Petroleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA), allegedly purchased a villa in an exclusive urbanization of the Dominican Republic.

According to the newspaper El País, Spain, card charges and transfers confirm that between 2008 Y 2012, when the robbery of the oil company was hatched, Zabala paid more than four million euros in jewelry, hotels and works of art and that he also acquired the villa in the Dominican Republic.

Zabala is being accused of spending more than four million on luxury goods during the years of the public energy fraud.

It indicates that the documents to which the international media had access show that the insurance broker gave in January 2011 a signal of 602,000 euros to get a luxurious villa of 915 square meters valued at €1.7 million in the exclusive urbanization of Cap Cana, in Higüey. And that Zabala was spent 33.645 euros in 2014 in various repairs to improve the garden of this property called Villa Marina Cap Cana.

The businessman, who did not work at PDVSA, is being prosecuted in Andorra for his links with one of the members of the plot that plundered the public company, the Venezuelan insurance tycoon Omar Farías.

General view of the Amuay refinery, in the State of Falcón (Venezuela), owned by PDVSA, in 2016.
(CARLOS GARCIA RAWLINS (REUTERS))

A court in Andorra prosecuted in 2018 for the plundering of PDVSA some thirty people, including Zabala, Farías and the former Vice Ministers of Energy of Venezuela Nervis Villalobos Y Javier Alvarado. Since then, they have all been accused of money laundering and bribery for asking for alleged illegal commissions from companies, especially Chinese, which were later graced with millionaire awards from the Venezuelan oil company.

The network operated between 2007 and 2012 and resorted to laundering his loot to a convoluted skein of thirty companies located in tax havens such as Belice or countries protected by bank secrecy, such as Swiss or Andorra. The money allegedly stained by the corruption of the oil company converged in the deposits of the EPS, an entity intervened in 2015 for participating in an alleged money laundering for international criminal groups.

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