Spanish National In Police Net Over €1.6m Contract Scam, As Imo Government Moves To Recover Funds
A Spanish national and Director in a construction company known as Hormipresa Nig Ltd, Mr. Jose Marin Lopez-Pepe is presently in police custody following a suspected move to divert 1.6 Million Euros meant for the purchase and supply of materials for the execution of a contract awarded to the company by Imo state government.
Mr. Lopez-Pepe was arrested in Lagos by the operatives of Inter-Pol and handed over to Imo State Police Command while trying to flee the country following a petition by the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the company, Mr. Emmanuel Benjamin Emenike.
Hormipresa is one of the major companies awarded monumental projects by the government of Imo state having secured a contract worth about 3.5 Billion Naira.
The state government released 30% of the contract value of over N1 Billion Naira to the company as mobilization funds. The Managing Director, Mr. Benjamin Emmanuel Emenike, it was gathered transferred the sum N1.6 Million Euros to the Spanish Bank account of Lopez-Pepe for the purchase of essential materials from Spain for the execution of the project which are yet to be supplied.
In a letter addressed to the commissioner of Lands, Survey, Housing and Urban Development, Hon. Uche Nwosu, dated April 22nd, 2013 that was signed by the Managing Director, Mr. Emenike titled “On-Going Inter-Pol Action On A Case Of Stealing And Obtaining By False Pretence Against Spanish National Mr. Jose Marin Lopez To Repatriate/Refund Of Hormipresa Nig Ltd Imo Project Fund” the company said that the director is presently in police custody, a step the company said was taken to recover the fund committed into his hand.
It reads: ” I wish to refer to the above name subject matter which we had earlier reported that one of our directors who suppose to supply essential materials from Spain was yet to effect supply thereby
causing unwholesome delays in the execution of the project. I further informed you that Inter-Pol had been contacted to assist in compelling the said director to ensure the supplies. I wish to inform further that the said director is now in police custody for steps to recover the fund committed into his hand to affect the supplies”.
Meanwhile, the state government through the ministry of Lands, Survey, Housing and Urban Development has written to the appropriate Spanish authorities and the banks requesting for immediate repatriation and release of the funds meant for monumental projects in the state.
The government expressed concern with the slow performance by Hormipresa Nig. ltd following the trapped fund in the Spanish bank and requested the concerned authorities to release the fund to enable the company continue with the project.