In Paraguay, the National Ports Authority has reportedly announced that it intends to report the nation’s president to the public prosecutor over a plan to use its land in order to build a new hotel and casino complex for the country’s second largest city of Ciudad Del Este.
According to a report from G3 Newswire, the ports regulator wants to put Horacio Cartes from the center-right Colorado Party along with Ciudad Del Este mayor Sandra McLeod De Zacarias and other public officials on trial for usurping its authority in taking over the land for the proposed hotel and casino development.
In order to help attract players from the neighboring Brazilian city of Foz Do Iguacu, the planned casino complex is reportedly set to be located inside the current local headquarters of the National Ports Authority at the head of the Friendship Bridge border crossing. The just over 27-acre site is additionally due to feature a hotel with 200 to 300 rooms along with a swimming pool as well as shops and other entertainment facilities.
G3 Newswire reported that any prospective casino operators will be required to invest at least $50 million in the development in exchange for a 20-year gambling license while numerous firms from as far afield as the United States including the likes of Hard Rock Cafe International Incorporated are said to be interested.
Although Cartes sanctioned the start of the casino’s tender process earlier this month, the National Ports Authority has rejected presidential decrees 6131 and 6865 over allegations that these violate the Ports Law 1066, which prohibits the use of the regulator’s land for any purpose not in keeping with its main objective. The group also claims that the land concession was carried out without its approval and that the building of a gambling facility would destroy the historical and cultural heritage of Ciudad Del Este.
The National Ports Authority reportedly moreover wants the public prosecutor to investigate Gustavo Leite, Industry And Commerce Minister for Paraguay, as well as the President of the National Gaming Commission, Javier Balbuena, over various corruption, malfeasance, breach of trust and false document claims.
“Horacio Cartes, Sandra McLeod De Zacarias, Gustavo Leite, Javier Balbuena and his accomplices will be reported to the public ministry for the usurpation of public authority for the Directory Of Ports and for producing a document with false ideological content,” read a statement from Nicolas Russo, a lawyer working on behalf of the National Ports Authority. “We also anticipate that we are going to demand the political judgment of the president for the poor performance of his duties aside from perpetrating a criminal act against the patrimony of the Paraguayan people.”