After his resounding failure in the 2017 Parliamentarians, when he tried unsuccessfully to be elected senator for La Araucanía, former UDI DEPUTY Gustavo Hasbún was far from the front line of politics. But his reappearance, hand in hand with the audios case, re-installed on the right the ghost of episodes of corruption, splashed government figures like Economy Minister Lucas Palacios, and brought the subject of financing under the carpet on the right irregular political campaigns.
The plot that has as the protagonist of the former mayor and former deputy with the entrepreneur Bruno Fulgeri, former contractor of the MOP, although it began with a report by the former mayor Jorge Atton last October, was only unveiled this weekend when a recording was known where a recording was known where a recording was known where a recording was known Hasbún offers the owner of the construction company SGYC to make arrangements – even with Palacios, then undersecretary of the MOP – warning him to «eye that this costs money». While the Prosecutor’s Office opened an investigation for alleged bribery and trafficking in, and now puts the spotlight on whether there is a «pattern of conduct» in other cases in La Araucanía, the accusations between Hasbún and Bruno Fulgeri have escalated.
The businessman was at the CHV morning, where he accused Hasbún directly of asking him for support for his political campaign for a senator in the area. «The first time I see Gustavo Hasbún is at my house for the elections of parliamentarians in La Araucanía, February 2017, even before. He comes to my house to ask for support, because my political tendency in the area is known, I supported the Government, I voted for this government, I voted for Gustavo Hasbún. I collaborated in the campaigns,» he said.
Moreover, the contractor said hasgone arrived with Henry Leal, who at the time was a candidate for deputy for the UDI and is currently a seremi of Public Works. According to Fulgeri, these requests were «economic and vans for the transfer of people (…) I passed him vans,» he says.
The aforementioned Henry Leal told The Second one that «it is outrageous that they involve third parties, I have nothing to do with this story, I am absolutely innocent» and ruled out asking Fulgeri for financial support. «I never asked for a weight or collaborated with a weight,» he replied. However, with regard to Hasbún, he maintains doubt, noting that «I do not know whether or not he supported him, but never me,» he added.
Leal was backed by the mayor of La Araucanía Víctor Manoli, who told Radio Cooperative that «here there is a revenge probably product that he (the entrepreneur) had terminated the contracts because he had failed to comply and also made effective the guarantees I had,» he added.
The Hasbún case thus revives the spectre of right-wing political campaign funding. Interestingly, one of the actors who came out to review was Senator UDI Iván Moreira, who entered the debate to put the «hands on fire» by Lucas Palacios. The point is that Moreira is an emblem of the political silver scandals: it was formalized by fake ballots in the Pentra case, and only managed to suspend proceedings thanks to an agreement with the Public Prosecutor’s Office for payment of $35 million.
In the midst of this controversy, the former deputy Gustavo Hasbún opted for the judicial process and announced this afternoon that he filed a complaint for insults against the employer who accused him of bribery.
«The honor of our representative has been seriously affected and we will make every effort to establish the falsity of this complaint,» said the former parliamentarian’s advocate Mario Vargas.
According to the libel, the entrepreneur delivered «falaces» and «insulting» statements. «This audio has been interpreted dously and gently by the reellator, since it does not refer to the coordination of a coima or irregular payments, but concerns advice that Mr Fulgeri asked me to ask me because he was having problems with the execution of some contracts with the MOP in La Araucanía, advice that obviously has a cost in professional fees,» he says.
In conversation with the media this afternoon, Vargas noted that these are events dating back to February 2019 and «more than a year later this complaint is made (…) It is an action to exploit Mr. Fulgeri in order to denote my representative.»
«Pattern of behavior»
Beyond this edge, the Public Prosecutor’s Office confirmed that they are working on the thesis that there is a «pattern of conduct» in the MOP in La Araucanía, so other irregularities are investigated.
Fulgeri himself said in Chilevision that in the region «there is a mafia that is structured» and Evópoli deputy Andrés Molina reported that there is «a much larger coimas situation». «We were listening earlier to how small businesses were treated to extort them and squeeze them for payments,» the MP told El Mercurio.
Moreover, Molina pointed to Hasbún, noting that «I imagine it has a whole network inside the MOP that can solve everything in three minutes when they are not resolved in a year.»
In addition, the statements are the former prosecutor of the Ministry of Public Works in La Araucanía, Cristián Ríos, who is also currently charged with bribery. The former official assured Radio Cooperative that the situation «all its life was like this» at the MOP, but since the current government took office, corruption «overflowed.»
In this regard, the former prosecutor pointed directly to the seremi of Public Works, Henry Leal. «It came with a preponderance and an encouragement to increase all this corruption that already existed,» Rios accused.
On this edge the Public Prosecutor’s Office moves. According to la Segunda for the Chief prosecutor of the High Complexity Prosecutor’s Office of the Region of La Araucanía, Héctor Leiva, «we have been reviewing other investigations related to the Ministry of Public Works in the region with the aim of crossing some kind of information that could repeat some kind of pattern of behavior (…) these are complaints that the prosecutor’s office also handles in high complexity that could involve some of the same people.»