Wed, 08 Jan 2020 16:54 - Updated Wed, 08 Jan 2020 16:54
PGR admits to seize Isabel dos Santos assets in Portugal
Luanda - The Attorney General's Office (PGR) has admitted that it may seize holdings of Angolan businesswoman Isabel dos Santos in Portuguese companies, as happened in Angola.
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Angolan businesswoman Isabel dos Santos (file)
Quoted by the Portuguese newspaper ECO, PGR spokesman Álvaro João said that there is nothing to say that it has to happen this way, but “if necessary we will take the advantage of the cooperation agreements with Portugal”.
Álvaro João stressed that in this specific case PGR is not yet working with Portugal, adding that both states have cooperation and information sharing agreements.
"If necessary, we will use them," said the PGR spokesman.
The Luanda Provincial Court ruled in December the seizure of bank accounts owned by Isabel dos Santos, her husband, Sindika Dokolo, and the chairperson of Banco do Fomento de Angola, Mário Leite da Silva, as well as the participation of the businesswoman and husband at Banco BIC, Unitel, Condis and Sodiba.
According to Álvaro João, the choice of the seized assets is related to their location, which PGR decided to "attack" so that they were not transferred to another location, adding that the possibility of the process reaching Isabel dos Santos's assets in Portugal "will be seen in due time".
For now, the process targeting the businesswoman does not include stakes in Portuguese companies such as Galp, EuroBic, Efacec and Nos.
Main lawsuit goes to court in March
The main lawsuit that the Angolan state will bring against Isabel dos Santos to recover the assets it claims is due to be brought to court only in March, due to the court holidays, according to the same newspaper.
The ruling of the Luanda Provincial Court which decreed the seizure of bank accounts and shareholdings of the three parties is dated 23 December, and the state would have up to 30 days to continue the main action.
However, judicial vacations imply a suspension of the deadline, so nothing should happen until the new judicial year opens in the country between the first and second week of March.
The precautionary measure is a provisional judicial act aimed at safeguarding the interests of the injured parties, for example by stopping the release of property.
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