The Anti-Corruption Prosecutor asks to open an oral trial against Iberdrola Generación and four directors for altering prices | Economy

Iberdrola headquarters in Bilbao.
Iberdrola headquarters in Bilbao.

The Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office has requested to open an oral trial against Iberdrola Generación and four directors whom it points out as being responsible for a crime related to the market and against consumers for carrying out an “artifice” in 2013 that served to increase the price of energy causing a loss of more than 107 million euros. For this reason, he asks for up to two years in prison for the four directors and a fine of 84.9 million euros for the company.

In an accusation brief sent to the National Court, the prosecutor Antonio Romeral is directed against the subsidiary and against Ángel Chiarri, director of Energy Management; Gregorio Relaño, responsible for Optimization, Resource Management and Trading; José Luis Rapún, in charge of Asset Management; and Javier Paradinas, in charge of Short-Term Markets and Global Generation. As he explains, “in order to cause a rise in the price of electricity and harm consumers, [se] devised and put into operation a system to increase the price of the energy it sold, beyond what should result from the free concurrence of supply and demand”.

To achieve this higher price in the electricity market, Romeral relates, “from November 30, 2013 and until December 23, 2013 [se] increased, without legitimate cause to justify it, the price in the electric power offers corresponding to its Duero, Sil and Tajo hydroelectric plants, to a level above the daily market price that prevented matching operations. And this, emphasizes the prosecutor, “despite the increase experienced in those days by the prices of electricity in the cash market, which placed it at an optimal opportunity cost.”

In this way, the Public Ministry calculates that a loss of 107.34 million euros was caused, which was borne by both consumers and the twenty distribution companies that appear as injured in the case. Thus, it requests that the defendants compensate up to a maximum of that amount, jointly and severally, to the marketers “and to the rest of natural and legal persons who prove, as final consumers of electrical energy or guarantors of energy prices, to have suffered or be affected by the increase in energy prices in the period from November 30 to December 23, 2013, both inclusive”.

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