Economy Ecuador central bank officials convicted of embezzlement

Ecuador central bank officials convicted of embezzlement


Pedro Delgado Campaña
Former Ecuadorian central bank director Pedro Delgado Campaña

(AA) — Former Ecuadorian central bank director Pedro Delgado Campaña, a cousin of Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa, was among eight people convicted of embezzlement.

In December 2011, an $800,000 loan was made by the state-owned Cofiec bank to Argentine businessman Gaston Duzac without fulfilling the necessary requirements, three judges determined in a unanimous ruling.

Delgado Campaña was head of the bank at the time, having been appointed to the post in November 2011. He resigned in 2012 after evidence surfaced that he had falsified a university degree.

Along with Delgado Campaña and Duzac, several Cofiec bank officials were found guilty of embezzlement, including former Cofiec executive president Antonio Buñay. Delgado Campaña’s brother-in-law Francisco Endara, a public trust official at the time, was also among those convicted.

“They are perpetrators because their actions perpetrated the commission of the crime,” said judge Luis Enríquez.

Delgado Campaña, Duzac, Buñay, Endara and two others all face between four and eight years in prison. Two more Cofiec bank officials were convicted as accessories but will not face prison, and one other was acquitted.

Attorney General Galo Chiriboga applauded the ruling and promised to pursue the country’s requests for the extradition of Delgado Campaña and Duzac to Ecuador. Delgado Campaña is believed to be residing in Miami, and Duzac lives in Argentina.

“The legal situation improves now that there is a ruling. We’ll send it to the president of the Supreme Court of Justice so that it can reach the countries subject to the requests through regular channels,” said Chiriboga, according to the El Comercio newspaper.

Chiriboga also questioned the “little reciprocity” shown by United States to Ecuador on extradition requests and other matters.

“There’s a conviction. There’s an extradition request with which, in the opinion of the attorney general’s office, the United States is legally obligated to comply. Not just because of the agreements we have with that country, but also due to the practice of international reciprocity and courtesy,” he said.

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