david valadezone of the former socialist councilors of the City Council of Estepona who pulled the blanket in 2006 to uncover the case Astapaabout the alleged plot of political and urban corruption in the municipality, regrets the slowness of justice Spanish, which in his opinion “protects” the guilty.
Last January, the macro-trial of the Astapa case began at the Provincial Court of Malaga, with 50 defendants, sixteen years after the procedure was opened, with the previous questions.
“What has happened with the Astapa case is surprising as well as regrettable, and the message that is conveyed to anyone who is witnessing a corruption plot is absolutely discouraging and disheartening“, says Valadez in an interview with EFE.
More than 15 years of waiting
Until now he had not wanted to speak, but after the start of the trial he considers that it is “Time to break that self-imposed silence” and tell what happened.
Valadez, who testified this week as a witness, is satisfied because he had been waiting 17 years to testify, but at the same time he is “very disappointed and even ashamed with the way the administration of justice works.”
The discomfort caused by a process that has lasted more than fifteen decades leads him to assure that, “without a doubt, I would not file the complaint again“Nor would I encourage others to speak out against corruption.
“I was younger and surely I was naivebelieving that the judicial system and the Ministry of the Interior itself were going to support me”, recalls the exedil, who when he joined the municipal corporation was a little over 20 years old.
Complaint at the UDEF
Valadez was a councilor for the first time in 2003 and “as a consequence of what was happening,” he specifies, he resigned in 2005 from the boards of directors of the municipal companies of which he was a part and in 2006 he went to Madrid to process a complaint for alleged corruption before the Central Unit for Economic and Fiscal Crime (UDEF) together with his partner, Cristina Rodríguez.
“I would tell him – he indicates to anyone who considers raising his voice on a similar issue – that if he does not want to ruin his life, what he has to do is present his resignation and leave because unfortunately the system, as it is structured, allows those people who have had this type of behavior come out supported and endorsed to the detriment of those who are honest and honest“.
During their time as councilors, Valadez explains, he and Rodríguez observed situations that made them feel very uncomfortable and received pressure to approve “dubious” urban agreements by, among others, José Flores, the then chief of staff of former socialist mayor Antonio Barrientos, both accused in the case.
“I attend an electoral campaign in which, among other issues, I see the then mayorcandidate for re-election and general secretary of the PSOE in Estepona, hand out 500 euro bills some people in the Solís neighborhood,” says Valadez.
“I see how musical performances by groups are financed as if we were a party at the national level, where the 500-euro bills seemed to fall on edge at the headquarters of the political formation without anyone being suspected,” he adds.
“Social groups, neighborhood associations, sports entities and even brotherhoods were financed with cash from urban planning, outside of any type of control” of the City Council, he assures.
On the other hand, he affirms, “hundreds of people accessed a job in the Estepona City Council without there being any type of selection process. Nor did they smell equality, merit or ability“, complaint.
“The conclusion is very clear, if there is a businessman who is financing certain activities outside of the City Council, it is because he is going to obtain some kind of consideration,” says Valadez, which was what he wanted the investigation to investigate. UDEF.
He asserts that he and Rodríguez denounced this situation within the Socialists, but the party “systematically ignored” them and “explicitly disavowed” them.
The worst thing, he adds, is that “since the provincial PSOE explicitly supported the then mayoramong other issues because the electoral polls were very propitious and guaranteed that the city of Estepona would continue to be governed”.
under urban planning
David Valadez explains that in these years he has received 18 summonses, including complaints, lawsuits and appeals, which “happyly have been archived”, and that They tried to ruin your life “by sky, sea and land”.
“We have been persecuted, we have been insulted and we have been maligned with the sole purpose of disavowal of our testimony and thus lessen the credibility of the instruction that was being carried out,” says the former councilor.
The pressure has been such, he says, that on occasion has considered moving from Esteponabut he has dismissed the idea because the “corrupt”, he adds, have continued to reside there, so there was no reason for him to do so.