“Banquete Total,” by journalist Jay Fonseca, is an excellent book. It reveals how every branch of Puerto Rico’s government – the governor, legislature, courts, and 78 mayors – all became completely corrupt.
The book is so detailed that it needed a three-part series.
The following article is Part III: Governor Luis Fortuño, the magician of Puerto Rico, makes $100 million disappear.
THE BAIT AND SWITCH TRICK
In politics and magic, the hand is quicker than the eye. The politician and magician both develop one great talent: that of misdirection.
Luis Fortuño hides 100 million dollars
They distract and confuse you, then move things around very quickly, so that you forget where they were in the first place. Usually they were in your pocket…but guess what?
They’re gone now. Your pocket is empty.
That’s what Luis Fortuño did, during his four years as governor of Puerto Rico. Fortuño appropriated $100 million of the island’s budget for the Fideicomiso de Ciencias. This was supposed to fund scientific projects all over Puerto Rico: wind and solar energy research, clean-up technology for the Martin Peña channel, infrastructure improvements for PREPA.
But these never happened, because Fortuño “re-appropriated” the money for “other uses.” (see “Banquete Total,” pp. 68-69).
The moment Fortuño tried to do this, one of the trustees of the Fideicomiso publicly opposed him. He even circulated a petition to stop the governor:
One year later, Fortuño took the $100 million, and three trustees of the Fideicomiso resigned in disgust:
To this day, no one knows where that $100 million finally went. It simply disappeared from the Fideicomiso.
$100 MILLION DISAPPEARS…AND THEN $5 BILLION MORE !
This money disappeared along with another $4,863,000,000 (nearly $5 billion) for “orientation, publicity, consulting and personal services” contracts all over the island. To this day, no one knows where all this money went, or who received it.
Actually, that is not entirely true. We do know where $22.8 million of the money went. It was paid in legal fees to the Washington D.C. law firm of Steptoe & Johnson…the same law firm that hired Luis Fortuño, when he lost his re-election for governor.
Steptoe now pays him a multi-million dollar salary.
In other words, Luis Fortuño funded his own partnership and salary at Steptoe & Johnson, with $22.8 million in Puerto Rican tax dollars.
It was a very neat magic trick…but how does someone NOT go to jail for this?
For a history of the War Against All Puerto Ricans, read the book…
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