Wed, 12 Feb 2020 12:14 - Updated Wed, 12 Feb 2020 12:14
Isabel dos Santos bank accounts in Portugal frozen
Luanda - The Portuguese justice has frozen the Angolan businesswoman Isabel dos Santos's bank accounts, according to the press note released last Tuesday by the Expresso (Portuguese newspaper) that relies on banking sector sources.
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Angolan Entrepreneur Isabel dos Santos
This freeze on the Portuguese bank accounts, adds the Expresso, is extended to all Portuguese banking institutions. It occurs at a time when the sale of some of Isabel dos Santos' shares in Portuguese companies is underway.
Meanwhile, the PGR (Attorney General's Office) of Angola has confirmed to Jornal Económico (Portuguese newspaper) that the request for the freezing of Isabel dos Santos' personal and business accounts was “formalized” in a letter rogatory sent on 23 January, after a meeting between the Attorneys Generals of the two countries.
The measure is part of the seizure of the assets of the businesswoman, who is accused of having defrauded the Angolan state of more than one billion euros.
In Angola, the businesswoman is being investigated for suspected mismanagement and tax evasion in the case related to the public oil company Sonangol, where she held the position of chairperson of the Board of Directors.
In August 2018, the Attorney General's Office (PGR) reaffirmed having notified Isabel dos Santos to provide clarifications on her management, while chairperson of the Board of Directors of Sonangol, a company that in the same year collected revenues estimated at 17.7 billion dollars.
The manager would be heard in the framework of an inquiry initiated by the PGR, on March 2, 2018, to investigate complaints of a "transfer" of more than 38 million dollars, allegedly directed by her, after being exonerated from her position.
In a statement, Isabel dos Santos, days later, denied the accusations and considered them "unfounded", saying she was "comfortable" with the inquiry opened by the PGR.
Although not yet a judicial case, Isabel dos Santos' name comes up again on the international media, now through ''Luanda Leaks''.
The investigation was carried out by an International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), in which professionals from 36 media participated.
The Angolan PGR confirms that it has requested Portugal to freeze the businesswoman's accounts, within the framework of requests for cooperation related to the “Luanda Leaks”, whose international investigation revealed more than 715 thousand files, detailing financial schemes of Isabel dos Santos and her husband, Sindika Dokolo.
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