20 FEBRUARY 2017
PHILIPSBURG–Gaetano Corallo, father of detained casino boss Francesco Corallo, wants the Prosecutor’s Office to stop dragging its feet when it comes to the criminal case filed against his son for fraud and embezzlement in November last year.
Corallo Sr. met with detectives since November and gave a detailed account of his complaint against Corallo Jr. Documents supporting the complaint were also provided to detectives early December, according to Attorney Roland Duncan, who represents Corallo Sr.
“We have been in close contact with the Prosecutor’s Office concerning the case, but it has gotten to a point now that the case is being stalled. I was even told by one prosecutor that is handling the case to get documents and produce them to his office. How can I do this when it is a criminal case and not a civil case?
“I am the lawyer of Corallo Sr. I provided you information on where to find these additional documents to substantiate my claim.
Normally, the prosecutor is known to go to places at all hours and confiscate evidence, but why the hesitation? Is it because the notary involved is Dutch?” Duncan questioned in an interview with The Daily Herald on Sunday.
Francesco Corallo (56) is still waiting for the extradition process to be completed by the Italian authorities. Corallo was arrested on December 13, by the Anti-corruption Taskforce TBO of the Kingdom Detectives Cooperation Team RST, at the request of Italian authorities.
The casino boss will be prosecuted in Italy for, amongst other things, tax evasion and bribery of several politicians. The Italian-born Corallo is also suspected in Italy for using his businesses for money-laundering.
Corallo’s father would like justice to prevail and get straight answers from the Public Prosecutor’s office because as a citizen he filed a complaint and followed all procedures before this extradition matter materialized.
“If the Prosecutor tells me that I have no case no problem, but why drag your feet. We have provided witnesses who are willing to speak to the prosecutor, up to now they have only called one and the others are still waiting. It is almost as if they are only focused on arrests and investigating politicians. One sneezes and all sort of teams are ready to investigate.” stated Corallo Sr. on Sunday.
In addition to the criminal complaint, Corallo Sr. plans to seek damages to the tune of US $10 million to $20 million for loss of revenues. Corallo Sr. has documents showing that properties owned by him, including Sea Palace, Fort Amsterdam, land on Great Bay Beach, 50 per cent ownership of Fun Time Casino, Starz Casino, a mansion in the Lowlands and much more, dating back to 1989 were left in the care of business partners while he was off-island to deal with legal troubles he faced at the time.
Corallo Sr. said the criminal case he filed against his son was easy to solve. Duncan wants clarity from the prosecutor and indicates if they will prosecute Corallo Jr. for his crimes against his client or have no intention of filing charges against him.
The Daily Herald contacted Prosecutor’s Office spokesperson Gino Bernadina to respond to the allegations made by Corallo Sr., however, he declined to give a comment at this time.
Source: The Daily Herald, St. Maarten