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Guilty– those accountable in Afinsa for the deceptive stamps

The National Court has enforced sentences as long as 12 years in prison for the planners of the fraud.

The National Court has sentenced today Wednesday 11 of the previous 13 directors of Afinsa for the pyramid selling of postage stamps which a decade ago left a great void of 2.57 billion EUR and impacted more than 190,000 investors, mainly small savers.


Archive image After six months of hearings, which was moved in June to the First Section of the Penal Court, condemns, to name a few, the president of Afinsa, Antonio Cano (12 years and 10 months), and the creator of Afinsa, Albertino de Figuereido (11 years), his boy Carlos de Figuereido and the advisor for the society (11 years and 11 months), the attorney for the company, former chief of the State Advocacy before the High Court of Justice in Madrid, José Joaquín Abajo (6 years and 3 months). Those condemned have to compensate those impacted, organized in different platforms for the amount of 2.57 billion EUR.The sentence almost follows the primary thesis of the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor, who implicated 13 people for the criminal activities of scams, punishable bankruptcy and the falsification of annual accounts. Afinsa existed between 1998 and May 9 2006 when it was stepped in, a pyramid organisation to catch enormous amounts of cash under the cloak of obvious normality based on the trading of postage stamps with the guarantee of large gains, much better than any bank or stock market investment.However, the stamps were virtually worthless, which led Afinsa to guarantee the victims a consistent enhancing worth of the stamps they were holding, however these new funds were in truth paying the interests demanded by the very first investors– a pyramid waiting to collapse.On May 9 2006, Afinsa was closed down by the authorities. At that moment the financial obligation was over 1.92 billion EUR. The accused, affirmed the district attorney, managed to perpetuate the scams thanks of large business network’very strong and extremely well paid to press the brand-new financiers to buy more stamps’- ‘an enormous and expensive effort’which lastly established 716 delegations throughout Spain, according to the sentence redacted by the magistrate Ramón Sáez, for’experts integrated into the subculture of the organisation, to the point of relying on household, buddies and neighbours while understanding about the speculative nature woven by the administrators.The sentence puts at the top of the corrupt organisation Albertino Figuereido, an expert philatelic and stamp collector and Juan Antonio Cano, financial expert. These two developed and profiled the business and took the most crucial choices in a company with a’household structure’where’there was no separation between ownership and administration’. In the hierarchy of Afinsa was the legal representative José Joaquín Abajo, who edited all the contacts for the company and double jobbed as the chief of the State Advocacy before the High Court of Justice in Madrid. This qualified by State civil servant even printed the draft agreements for Afinsa on paper for the Justice Administration.In putting his sentence, Ramón Sáez, argued that Afinsa was an unviable company, which lacked economic sense. The stamps -they ended up saving some 150 million, the majority of minimal value– were sold to

the investors at a far greater cost than at market, on the guarantee of eventual wealth. The constant overvaluing of the stamps ensured Afinsa were at the centre of the fraud,’ a story imagined for only brand-new investors who were innocent and gullible in their financial investments’. The stamps managed by Afinsa were retired from flow and stored. This goes against the logic in trading stamps according to the sentence ‘the value of the stamp is when it is placed on the market for auction

and particularly when purchasers are found, something which never ever took place in the behavior of Afinsa which was internal closed and fictitious, when the stamps were secured of blood circulation’ affirms the sentence.The accounting professionals at Afinsa distorted the economic truth of the business and utilized’ technical artifices’to conceal the truth of the accounts and the production of’continuous losses’. Those responsible had a look of solvency and extolled the’tremendous

liquidity produced by signing for a financial investment’when their financial investment went to pay those at the bottom of the pyramid.