Joe Berardo to be heard in parliament this afternoon – The Economic Journal

Joe Berardo to be heard in parliament this afternoon - The Economic Journal

The businessman Joe Berardo is heard today at the commission of inquiry into the recapitalization and management of Caixa Geral de Depósitos (CGD), in the Assembly of the Republic, at 2.30 pm, having been one of the most mentioned names at the hearings.

The hearing was originally scheduled for May 7, like that of businessman Manuel Fino, but was eventually postponed to today.

According to the audit of EY to the management of Caixa Geral de Depósitos (CGD) between 2000 and 2015, the public bank had this year an exposure to Joe Berardo and Metalgest, a company of its universe, in the order of 321 million euros.

The loans to Joe Berardo served to finance the purchase of shares of BCP, in what some deputies already classified as a "bank robbery" in 2007, whose guarantee was the shares themselves, which then devalued practically in totality, generating great losses for the bank. public bank

Joe Berardo's estate has been scaled down in committee, and it has been repeated over and over again during the hearings that the only asset registered in his name is "a garage in Madeira."

On April 2, CGD's former accountant Manuel de Oliveira Rego said, without referring directly to the name of the businessman, that "an effort was made, in terms of his personal endorsement [Joe Berardo] and wife, in terms of art collections. "

On the following day, the former chairman of CGD's fiscal council Eduardo Paz Ferreira considered it "extremely difficult" for the bank to recover the guarantees given by the Madeiran businessman, because it is a "huge legal confusion" involving "Berardo Foundation" and "The connections with the State".

"If there is [Joe Berardo] knows how to do is to choose good lawyers, "added Eduardo Paz Ferreira.

The university professor also wished "very good luck" to Caixa's current administration in a "kamikaze operation" to get to the 'core' [centro] of Mr. Berardo, "and suggested that he was a" totally special client and outside the rules "at CGD.

However, former CGD director of large companies Cabral dos Santos said that "Metalgest and the José Berardo Foundation have never had any type of treatment privilege in the Caixa, let alone a treatment outside the rules."

Former CGD president Carlos Santos Ferreira lined up for the same idea, saying that he had never seen "anything that would lead to the conclusion that this person […] had dealt with outside the rules "in a reply to Mr Paulo Sá (PCP).

On April 20, CGD, BCP and Novo Banco handed over an executive action to collect debts of Joe Berardo, almost 1,000 million euros, in the Judicial Court of the Region of Lisbon, and the Foundation and two companies linked to the entrepreneur.

One of the objectives of the action is to access Berardo Collection works of art, about which the entrepreneur has an agreement with the State for which the works are on display at the Centro Cultural de Belém (CCB) in Lisbon until 2022 and can not be sold.

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