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Angola wants USD 2 billion in lawsuit against Isabel dos Santos

Sun, 05 Jul 2020 11:58 - Updated Sun, 05 Jul 2020 11:58

Luanda - Angolan Government said that it expects to recover at least USD 2 billion in several lawsuits filed in a single civil case against engineer Isabel dos Santos.

The information was released on Friday by the Attorney General  Hélder Pitta Grós, during a press conference.

Pitta Grós, on the other hand, denied reports on an alleged interest of the Angolan Government in negotiating with Isabel dos Santos.

Likewise, he denied that the Attorney General's Office (PGR) has given up on the idea of ​​requesting the issuance of an arrest warrant against the businesswoman.

He ruled out the possibility for the Angolan side to negotiate with the businesswoman", unless she wishes.

Hélder Pitra Grós ruled out losses for the Angolan Government for nationalization by the Portuguese Government of 71.73 percent of Efacec's share capital, held by Angolan businesswoman Isabel dos Santos, through Winterfell.

According to the PGR, Angola's interests are safeguarded, stressing that there was no investment in a desired volume of shares because ENDE later ended up giving up.

The PGR rules out any intention of the government to negotiate with the businesswoman Isabel dos Santos, clarifying that the negotiation would only be possible outside the process, and in the process, it is only admissible if one of the parties gives up.

He assured that the process is ongoing and at the moment there is nothing to suggest that the Angolan Government can give up on these actions, because there was no specific move from Ms. Isabel dos Santos that “makes us give up on these actions”.

He explained that if there are other complaints, they must be presented by the lawyers of the businesswoman within the process.
Negotiation could only be held if one of the parties recognises its mistake, i.e, some illicit fact.

“The government has not committed any illegal act. So we (government) do not have any intention to negotiate. If she wants to negotiate, she must recognise the illegal acts she has committed, she must tell the acts committed by herself or by the functioning of her companies in order to evaluate it ”, he said.

He added that if it complies with what the Angolan government is requesting in civil action, we will go ahead.

“In relation to criminal proceedings, this no longer happens,” explained the source, stressing that the criminal proceeding is underway, along with the actions regarding the recovery of assets and both are in progress and we will continue with them.

Hélder Pitra Grós informed that the PGR has not received any expression of interest from Isabel dos Santos so far.

In the PGR's view, it cannot be said that there is political persecution against Isabel dos Santos, because there are concrete facts that are in the criminal process and in civil actions. "This is where we can discuss the issues."

As for the alleged protection of other figures, the PGR said that things cannot run at the same time, there is no capacity for all citizens who have committed illegal acts to see their processes to be dealt with.

“There are investigation processes that are underway and in due course will come to the public's attention. In relation to it, it may be due to the fact that its exposure has given more prominence to society ”, he stressed.

Hélder Pitra Grós reiterated the intention to recover all financial and non-financial assets that were diverted from the treasury.
"At this moment there are some limitations due to the moment we are experiencing, but we did not stop completely", he assured."

Regarding the arrest warrant, Hélder Pitra Grós said that it is a hypothesis that is always open, because arrest warrants are also used to force a citizen who does not come by himself or who does not respond to notifications to report to justice.

“We want her to report to justice. This does not means that after being heard she will be detained. This is a second step that the magistrate will be able to decide. The first objective is to make sure that she come herself to justice ”, explained the official.