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Voices from beyond the grave can convict corrupt bankers/contractors who thought they could silence testimony!

VHeadline editor & publisher Roy S. Carson writes: The slaughter continues!  Seventeen people died violently on March 11, 2009"  Sixteen in Winnenden, Germany, hit the international headlines, TV news and radio bulletins ... the seventeenth was scarcely noticed, but it took place in Venezuela!

A Swiss-Venezuelan citizen was tortured and killed in her own apartment in eastern Anzoategui State at the hands of hired killers.  Maria Spinas was massacred in her own apartment in Puerto La Cruz.... But the background to the senseless blood-letting is more sinister:

HAPPIER DAYS: 53-tear-old murder/torture victim:
Maria Clelia Spinas Dora
(right) with her 18-year
daughter Clelia Victoria just a few days ago!

A civil engineer,  employed by the Housing & Habitat Ministry as an inspector, Maria Clelia Spinas Dora, had told friends and relatives at a dinner party only last Saturday that she had been forced to take on the same role as President Hugo Chavez Frias in head-on confrontation with corruption ... but her grieving family say that she did not realize that she would need a group of bodyguards to take on the battle of a “frontal fight against corruption.”

Clelia (as she was known to her friends) said she had been engaged in an investigation into an important Anzoategui bank (a government fideicomiso/trustee) and a contract corporation owned by “a seemingly angelic gentleman” who many in the administration had considered simply “to be quiet and shy.” The contractor name was not clearly mentioned. Some sources claim it was Carmona.

On Saturday, she said that she herself could NOT be either shy or quiet about cases "like this" ... she said it was ironic that, during all the meetings she had had with the contractor and the Housing & Habitat Ministry, the contractor (to whom we will refer here only as "C") remained silent and those who attended the meetings of the investigations team had had a hard time believing that "C" was in fact a crook. It was Clelia's job as a Ministry inspector to get to the bottom of what had happened, come what may, and then to turn it over to law enforcement for immediate action in the courts.  It wasn't the first time she had "pushed her luck" since she had done something similar, uncovering corruption in the Accion Democratica (AD) part over 15 years ago ... she had established a brilliant career and won many “legal battles.”

In this particular case, both the Bank and Contractor "C" had convinced a former municipality officer to sign-off on documents which should properly have been signed by Housing Inspector Spinas Dora --- they had even induced the municipal official to sign the bank documents twice.

Clelia had told VHeadline last Saturday that she had all the (incriminating) copies in her hands and that "C" sister had also endorsed a contract for "quite a lot of public money." She had copies of documents that had been signed twice by the municipal official and sais how she had telephoned the bank, requesting copies of the documents just to be sure ... the bank had sent the exact same copies WITHOUT the municipal official’s signature ... and the space for HER signature was still blank.

In our interview, Clelia said she had struggled hard to convince the new municipal official who had been appointed to deal with infrastructural investments ... he had only just been appointed. following last November 23 local and regional elections, by the newly-elected Mayor, to resume investigation of this particular case. She said that the contractor and the bank involved in the plot had taken the money before the end of February 2008 .... without her signature.

Clelia continued meeting contractor "C" and municipality authorities for infrastructural investment although she vehemently denied having approved the already paid-out funds.  "Quite simply, I was not satisfied with the way in which the construction project had been done ... "C" had downgraded construction quality to make more profits and kept bringing new improvised blueprints to us!"  She insisted that they were not the original construction blueprints and that the subject of her signature on the documents was pressed at monthly meetings through 2008.

Last Saturday, just hours before she was savagely tortured and killed, Clelia had told us she was "deeply disappointed" when she found that her role as a Housing & Habitat Inspector had not received the respect the office requires ... the fraudsters had withdrawn the money from the bank a year before she discovered the true facts, although in her official capacity she had asked the bank several times for the status of the Bond (fideicomiso) and had been told that she could not have access to that information.

In an aside, Clelia told us that she had then received a call from the Vice Presidents' Office in Caracas, asking her to go to a protest meeting of people who had been swindled by a certain housing construction company. She said she went to meet the protestors and received all their data ... contractor "C" was named!  It was only at that point that it began to sawn on her that the "quietly shy" contractor had been pilfering millions from government trust funds ... very much to her alarm she also discovered that "C" had deceiving many people into paying deposits (which he stole) in anticipation of buying a house.

The sad fact, the tragedy is that Maria Clelia Spinas Dora was clear in her determination to make the true facts published.  WE at VHeadline were cautiously working on the espose ... but, as reported yesterday in the daily newspaper, Ultimas Noticias, three men wearing delivery company uniforms broke into her apartment in the Atarraya Building in Puerto La Cruz.  She -- and an assistent inspector who just happened to be with her at the time -- were tied up and badly beaten. The (unnamed) assistant was not killed; she was found later, otherwise unharmed.

Brave Maria Clelia Spinas Dora had been slashed savagely with knives!  She died covered in her own blood...

  • The perpetrators and their "capos" may think that they have been able to silence Maria Clelia Spinas Dora and they may even think they have succeeded in silencing further investigation of their corruption, stealing millions from the public purse.

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Roy S. Carson is veteran foreign correspondent (45+ years in the business) currently editor & publisher of VHeadline Venezuela reporting on news & views from and about Venezuela in South America -- available for interviews -- call Houston (more...)
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