Representative accuses La Fortaleza of intervening in Gambling Commission camera investigation

the representative of the people Jose “Cheito” Rivera Wood accused this morning the director of the Puerto Rico Gaming Commission, Orlando Rivera Carrionto participate in two additional trips paid for by personalities that he could be required to supervise from his position.

During a press conference on Capitol Hill, Rivera Madera indicated, presenting an e-mail from a representative of the company WinSystems International Holdings, that between July 24 and 27, 2021 and between November 1 and 3 2021, Rivera Carrión made two trips to Spain as part of an evaluation of offers from the company, which is interested in doing business in the island’s casino industry.

For the first trip, WinSystems International Holdings paid $2,262 for travel and accommodation and for the second trip, the expenses were $3,555.

Rivera Madera, on the other hand, accused La Fortaleza staff of wanting to interfere in an investigation conducted as chairman of the Tourism and Cooperatives Commission into the operations of the Gaming Commission. The alleged interference consists of the fact that with a difference of 13 minutes yesterday, the law firm O’Neill & Borges, which represents WinSystems International Holdings in Puerto Rico, and the assistant adviser of the Office of the Secretary for Legislative Affairs of The Fortaleza, Alberto Leon Ayalathey asked the Tourism and Cooperatives Commission for a copy of its regulations.

The first request was at 10:24 a.m. and was made by León Ayala. The second was made by a lawyer from the law firm O’Neill & Borges at 10.37am, also yesterday. The firm advises its client, WinSystems International Holdingswhile a company appearance at an executive meeting of the Tourism and Cooperativism Commission is being processed.

“This is undue interference by La Fortaleza and the law firm where the governor of Puerto Rico worked,” Rivera Madera indicated, during the interrogation, who could have given the order in the executive mansion to ask for the settlement. “I don’t believe in coincidences and there is someone protecting Rivera Carrión at La Fortaleza.”

Carlos Rivera Justiniano, Legislative Advisor to Governor Pedro Pierluisi, said the office where he works routinely requests all public documents from the Legislative Assembly as part of its legislative management analysis role. “It is a public document that should be on the House page, as are the standing orders of all the other Committees, but this one in particular was not there,” he said.

Rivera Justiniano said the settlement was requested over the phone a week before yesterday’s email. When he was told that he had to request payment by email, then the procedure was done yesterday.

“Our office requests regulations, documents, projects and any other public document that concerns the government as a standard procedure and which at no time involves inappropriate intervention, as it is part of the functions of this office,” said he added. .

Regarding the reimbursement of trips to Spain, Rivera Madera and his co-religionist Angel Matos Garcia On February 17, they filed a complaint with the Office of Government Ethics against Rivera Carrión, arguing that refunding these cats is unethical since Rivera Carrión must oversee the companies from which he receives refunds. Rivera Madera said he was unable to confirm whether the new information about travel to Spain would be incorporated into the initial complaint, but a source the new day indicated that the new information had been incorporated.

“It goes against any law of good administration. There’s no way this can be supported and there’s no regulation that can go above a law”said Rivera Wood.

On February 17, Rivera Madera accused Rivera Carrión before the OEG of having participated in a conflict of interest scheme by accepting reimbursements from a company with which the government is negotiating and of having participated in a conversation with members of the industry supposed to audit as director of the gaming commission.

In an official communication dated December 15 addressed to the Secretary of the House of Representatives, Javier Gomez Cruz, Rivera Carrión listed a series of official trips he made, including one from September 26 to October 6, 2021 in the cities of Chicago and Las Vegas. In a letter to the Secretary of the Interior, Noelia Garcia Bardalesand which was sent to the House, Rivera Carrión indicated that the expenses of the trip “Chicago-Las Vegas” would be reimbursed “by regulated companies, as established by the regulations of the Bureau of Games”.

Rivera Carrión did not inform the Chamber of trips to Spain.

In a January 20 brief to the House Committee on Tourism and Cooperatives, an attorney for the Gaming Committee referred to the same Chicago-Las Vegas trip and said, “It was fully reimbursed as part of the license investigation. of the casino, so it did not result in any expense to the government of Puerto Rico.

Another document says the purpose of the trip was “to audit a new license application for our jurisdiction.” During the trip, they visited the facilities of Incredible Technologies, which applied for a license to do business with casinos in Puerto Rico. During the trip, there were business discussions with James Dore Yes dainel schrementi.

The officials who took part in the trip were Rivera Carrión, Idalynn Ortiz (deputy director of the Commission), Jorge Castro (Deputy Director of Games of Chance) and jackie frank (administrative assistant in the area of ​​licenses). These people, on October 4, visited the sales office of Incredible Technologies in the city of Las Vegas, Nevada.

According to Matos and Rivera Madera, the evidence shows that the aforementioned officials incurred a conflict of interest by participating as regulators of the entertainment industry and “simultaneously receiving questionable financial compensation valued in the thousands of dollars, which compromised or attempted to compromise their judgment in evaluating Incredible Technologies,” the complaint reads.

According to the document, airfare, accommodation, subsistence allowance, ground transportation “and other unidentified expenses” were reimbursed.

On February 16, the director of the OEG, Luis Perez Vargastold lawmakers in writing that officials failed to conduct an ethics consultation during the trip.

In the opinion of Matos and Rivera Madera, by failing to consult, the officials violated OEG law. Likewise, they could have violated the OEG law by performing an action that calls into question the impartiality and integrity of the government function.

The popular lawmakers also included in their complaint to the OEG information revealed by a journalistic investigation which indicates that Rivera Carrión was part of a chat called “Unity is strength” made up of people from the machine industry. under which the official must check.

Rivera Carrión acknowledged his participation in the chat, where he is known as a “patron” and did so during a public hearing by the Chamber’s Committee on Tourism and Cooperativism.

Leave a Comment