Prosecutor demands three-year jail sentence for former Prime Minister of Curaçao
WILLEMSTAD – The Public Prosecutor demanded today a three-year jail sentence for the former Prime Minister of Curaçao, Gerrit Schotte. The Prosecutor also wants the court to prohibit Schotte from running for office for five years. The former Prime Minister of Curaçao is suspected of bribery, forgery and money laundering. There were unrest in the public when the Prosecutor announced his demands. Gerrit Schotte pityingly shook his head.
The case against Schotte came to light when a letter from him in 2011 to the Italian Minister of the Interior was leaked. In this letter the former the former Prime Minister asked for a certificate of good conduct from the Italian-Dutch casino owner Francesco Corallo, because he wanted to give him a prominent position. That did not go through because Corallo, according to the Italian authorities, is a member of the Sicilian Mafia and thus involved in international drug trafficking.
According to the prosecutor Francesco Corallo was the actual boss during the reign of the government Schotte. Schotte’s party MFK was established in 2010, according to the indictment, using huge sums of money from the casino boss. The Prosecutor says he can prove that Schotte booked more than 200,000 dollars in false invoices to conceal those donations.
“Therefore Corallo got a lot of power,” as stated in the indictment. So he paid to receive preferential treatment for himself and his casino chain on the island. He would also have access to classified government information from Schotte. Corallo was the one who drew up the electoral list of the MFK and ordered Schotte who should and who should not be a minister in his cabinet.