The Saga of Gerrit Schotte and Francesco Corallo 2018 Curacao and Sint Maarten

The Saga of Gerrit Schotte and Francesco Corallo 2018

Gerrit Schotte the first Prime Minister of Curacao and leader of the MFK party fell from political power in 2012 and thereafter he has faced the courts of Curacao on repeated occasions. In July 2017 Schotte was found guilty of official corruption and money laundering in the Court of First Instance in Curacao, thereafter he lost his appeal to the Appeal Court where he then appealed to the Supreme Court in The Hague, the Netherlands. Whilst awaiting the outcome of his appeal at the Supreme Court Schotte remained the leader of the MFK, is a member of the Parliament of Curacao and is in fact the largest single voter winner of the MFK in elections held since 2012. In fact, Schotte’s problems with the law did not negatively impact his party’s and his personal electoral performance since 2012 as Schotte and the MFK have been blocked from returning to political power by the refusal of the other prominent parties of Curacao politics to include the MFK in a ruling coalition. This has generated a flow of brittle coalition politics that at times has bordered on the ridiculous, sublime and the incompetent clearly the result of the pushing and prodding of the Dutch deep state and its ruling politicians. In August 2018 Schotte faced the Court of First Instance to defend himself against the claim of the State for the seizure of 1.8 million guilders and three years in prison in the event he fails to pay this sum. The prosecutor in this case presented the evidence of the flow of 213,000 USD from an account under the control of Francesco Corallo to an account in Miami, Florida, USA under the control of Schotte and his companion. The sum of 822,640 USD some three weeks before the 2010 general election in which the MFK won five seats was moved from International Financial Planning Services Ltd whose beneficial owner is Francesco Corallo to the Swiss bank account of No Brand Ltd registered in the Marshall Islands with Schotte as the beneficial owner. In August 2018 the Court ruled against Schotte ordering that he be deprived of NAf I, 844, 190.36 as this is the sum of illegally obtained funds. In November 2018 it was reported that even though Schotte has filed an appeal against the ruling this does not suspend the effort to recover NA f 1.8 million hence his salary as a member of Parliament was attached. On November 27, 2018 it was reported that the Supreme Court rejected Schotte’ appeal and confirmed the ruling of the Court of First Instance where he is sentenced to three years in prison and banned from offering himself for election for five years. Schotte is not in jail and now has to present himself to the prison authorities to begin his prison sentence. On November 29, 2018 it was reported that the President of the Parliament informed Schotte that his member ship of the Parliament was now revoked as a result of the confirmation of his sentence by the Supreme Court. Schotte remains a flight risk until such time he hands himself. over to the prison authorities.

Meanwhile Francesco Corallo returned to Sint Maarten in JUly 2018 having had his house arrest lifted and being given the permission to leave Italy by Italian authorities whilst his casinos in Sint Maarten remain seized by the government of Sint Maarten on the request of the Italian authorities. This entire development smells of a deal with a penitente. In October 2018 it was reported that Corallo won his case against the Netherlands at the European Court of Human Rights where the Court condemned the “inhumane detention” of Corallo at the police station in Philipsburg, Sint Maarten for months. Corallo was awarded 11,500 Euro by the Court which apparently has to be paid by the government of Sint Maarten to Corallo. The return of Corallo to Italy for his trial is the next expected event in the Corallo saga.

What did Schotte gain by dealing with Corallo in such a manner to leave burnt tyre marks connecting him to Corallo? Was this a case of bumbling stupidity, arrogant impunity or simply a combination of both driven by a condition of grave political hubris. If you intend to play the political games to make yourself a sustainable figure in the politics of Curacao, you cannot simply do it the way Schotte did it from 2010 to 2012. Schotte failed to ensure that he abided by the cardinal rule of electoral politics, plausible denial, before his ascent to political power and during his stint in power this recklessness demands explanation for it speaks to the nature of the political game in Curacao since 10/10. This recklessness was potently illustrated by the paucity of the defence Schotte made in the Courts of Curacao and The Hague. The explanations for the events of that period in the politics of Curacao are then vitally necessary towards understanding the evolution of politics in Curacao since 10/10. One possible explanation was the bid by transnational organised crime to purchase a Caribbean state especially one noted for its largely under and un regulated offshore activity. The murder of Helmin Wiels is then connected to this scenario and another door to unlock in the search for explanations. In April 2017 in the trial of Burney Fonseca the broker who received the order from the intellectual authors of the Helmin Wiles hit job and the contractor who hired the hit man of Helmin Wiels has the convicted hit man testify against him (Fonseca). Elves Kuwas the triggerman was approached by Luigi Florentina who was recruiting him under the instruction of Fonseca for the hit on Wiels. Florentina whilst arrested committed suicide at the police lock up. Kuwas testified that George Jamaloodin, minister of finance in the Gerrit Schotte government and the brother of Jamaloodin, Bobby dos Santos paid for the hit on Wiels. Fonseca was sentenced to 25 years in prison for his role in the Wiels murder. Kuwas testified that the contract sum for the Wiels hit was 250,000 guilders of which he only received 100,000 guilders. At the Fonseca trial several witnesses testified that they saw Jamaloodin handing over cash money to Fonseca on the compound of the security company then owned by Jamaloodin. In July 2018 Fonseca who is in prison in the Netherlands for drug trafficking was sentenced to 26 years in prison by the appeal court having appealed his 25-year sentence. Elves Kuwas is also in prison in the Netherlands for three murders including that of Wiels which indicates that he was a professional hit man working at least in Curacao if not the former Netherlands Antilles at the time. The person or persons who placed the hit on Wiels is/are very familiar with the Game in Curacao which indicates their knowledge and involvement in the Game themselves especially with Curacao organised crime and transnational organised crime. It is then obvious that Helmin Wiels was liquidated by organised crime in Curacao.

At the time of the Fonseca trial Jamaloodin was under arrest in Venezuela on an extradition warrant from Curacao but in September 2018 he was extradited to Curacao where he remains in detention on Bonaire despite several attempts to be released from jail by the courts of Curacao. On May 5, 2013 when Helmin Wiels was murdered in public in broad daylight he was leader of Pueblo Soberno the political party that supported Schotte and his MFK to form the government in 2010 then to effectively destroy the coalition in 2012 placing Schotte in the political wilderness whilst PS became the dominant party in the electoral politics of Curacao. The murder of Wiels in 2013 effectively destroyed the electoral potency of PS thereafter. It is expected that Jamaloodin’s trial with commence shortly and the question is if Fonseca will testify against Jamaloodin or play by the rules of the Game by serving his prison sentence in silence. Jamaloodin’s trial will reveal the role of the Game in the murder of Helmin Wiels. in the trial of Burney Fonseca

Francesco Corallo

Helmin Wiels murder

Thursday 6 December 2018

In a news report of Tuesday December 4 2018 Gerrit Schotte announced that he will surrender to the Prison Authority of Curacao on Wednesday 5 December 2018 which he did do for as I write Schotte is in prison in fact he woke up this morning a jailbird. At the press conference he called on the 4 December 2018 Schotte also indicated that he will continue to lead the MFK from prison with its five seats in Parliament. Schotte has now to settle the issue of the 1.8 million guilders claim on him which is now in appeal which indicates that he is again very busy in the courts. The MFK and Schotte are intent on making him  a political martyr in Curacao in the hope of holding on to its traditional voter support to retain control of five seats in the Parliament. But the issue is five plus more if you want to dominate the Curacao political landscape.

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