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BAUEN, day 72

Do you know what a front man is?

Also, among the considerations in the national bill is the relationship between the Iurcoviches and Mercoteles, which had been made obvious in an unusual trial concerning a complaint by Mercoteles for the violation of closure signs in Contravention Court n.° 3. The prosecutor himself, Adrián Martín, declared that:

(…) this trial should have found solutions in other political or judicial instances – such as bankruptcy proceedings. If that had occurred, this process would not have taken place. (…) While what is debated here is important, it turns out to be absurd, considering the underlying problem. By discussing something so specific, we run the risk of leaving aside central issues like factory recovery by their workers; or various economic groups that carry out highly suspicious maneuvers. Elephants are passing us by, and we can’t do anything about it, because we don’t have jurisdiction.1

The accused in this trial was also president of the cooperative at the time, Marcelo Ruarte. He was dismissed by the judge Carla Cavaliere for a lack of animosity in a ruling that also lifted the closure and authorized the use of the property by the workers. But the juiciest part was not in the favorable resolution, but rather in the role played by the witnesses and representatives of Mercoteles, who were unable to do anything other than make it clear that it was a phantom company controlled by the Iurcoviches. The article from the agency ANRed mentioned earlier shows it clearly:

[In the] statement of Gustavo Ruggero, a maintenance worker of the Bauen Suite, he did not know how to say exactly who his bosses are. He pointed out that currently, he works for the business Ghesa SA, but that his day-to-day relationship is with Luciana and Mónica Iurcovich, daughters of the deceased Marcelo Iurcovich, former owner of the Bauen. The young man also admitted to knowing Samuel Kaliman. In this way, more indications on the direct relationship between Mercoteles SA and the BAUEN Suite appeared, according to the workers’ complaint. Mercoteles is made up of frontmen and immediate family of the Iurcoviches.2

  1. “Two of lime, one of sand: Bauen, the fight for expropriation,” ANRed, 28 May 2006. Recovered from
  2. Ib.

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