According to a civil complaint filed in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, the Government of the Dominican Republic accused AES Corporation and its subsidiaries of conspiring with Silversport company; and with Dominican Republic government officials, including Rene Ledesma, Undersecretary of Environmental Management in the Ministry of the Environment, Rosendo Arsenio Borges, former Director of the National Port Authority, and other Executive and Legislative officials to dispose 57,000 tons of coal ash waste on pristine Dominican Republic beaches and in convenient port areas in the Dominican Republic. The AES companies and Silverspot were also accused of engaging in other wrongful acts -- such as bribing and attempting to bribe Dominican Republic officials to violate Dominican Republic laws prohibiting the disposal of foreign waste, subversion of the customs laws of the United States, and threats of murder -- in order to spare themselves the substantial expenses associated with properly disposing of hazardous coal ash waste.
AES was accused of knowing that Silverspot and the Dominican companies, Multigestiones Valenza and Trans Dominicana de Desarollo, were colluding with corrupt Dominican Republic officials. The complaint also alleged that corrupt or coerced officials in the Dominican Republic fired District Attorney Arias on or about May 9, 2004, after he publicly objected to AES and Silverspot's disposal of the coal ash. Finally, the complaint alleged that in April 2004, executives from AES Puerto Rico traveled to the Dominican Republic to meet with executive and legislative branch officials of the Dominican Government; AES Puerto Rico was alleged to have paid additional bribes to government officials, perhaps as much as $2 million (Exact number unknown but the Complaint (Government of DR v. AES) states that "as much as 2 million dollars in personal bribes was paid to government officials").
Type of Illicit activity involving Public Official :
Impediments to investigation:
Chain of corporate vehicles
Most recent legal action against Public Official?:
Other legal action/ other prosecutions:
Country of Public Official:
Complaint, Government of Dominican Republic et al. v. AES et al., no. 1:06cv313 (GBL/BRP) (E.D. Va. 2006), accessed at http://www.burkeoneil.com/human-rights/pleadings-detail.php?id=30&select_year=2009 Notice of Hearing on the Dominican Republic's Motion for Summary Judgment, Government of Dominican Republic et al. v. AES et al., no. 1:06cv313 (GBL/BRP) (E.D. Va. 2007), accessed at http://www.burkeoneil.com/human-rights/pleadings-detail.php?id=30&select_year=2009 "Dominican Republic town blames US firm for birth defects." Latin American Post, accessed at http://www.latinamericanpost.com/index.php?mod=seccion&secc=5&conn=5896 "Coal Ash Dumping: Criminal Case." toxic-coal-ash.net, accessed at http://www.toxic-coal-ash.net/case_criminal.htm
Position of Public Official during scheme:
Undersecretary of Environmental Management in the Ministry of the Environment (Ledesma); Director of the National Port Authority (Borges); other government officials
Is there a pending case or appeals?:
Yes (Indictment in United States)
UNCAC Articles(s) Implicated:
Money laundering Implicated?: Yes
This story and more here: http://star.worldbank.org/corruption-cases/node/18707