To understand the structure of the accusation, one must keep in mind how the law works bankruptcy procedure of the arrangement with creditors. The asseveratore or attestatore is one hybrid figure introduced by the law of 2005. It is appointed by debtor, that is in this case from Astaldi, but it must be independent is third in attesting precisely the correctness is sustainability of the recovery plan presented at bankruptcy court and ai creditors. It is essentially the guarantor of the consistency of the numbers of the recovery plan. Therefore, this guarantee function must be third and independent. Before and regardless of this investigation, someone had raised doubts about thirdness of Gatti who is a member of board of directors of Banca Intesa, great creditor of Astaldi and protagonist of his recovery plan by Salini group: the so-called "Project Italy".
A year ago there was the presentation of the agreement request to the bankruptcy court of Rome. On 5 August, the court of Rome, president of the bankruptcy section Antonino La Malfa, commissioned judge Angela Coluccio, admitted Alstaldi to the procedure of composition with creditors as a going concern, based on a plan and a proposal of composition presented by Astaldi on the basis of theirrevocable offer to purchase Salini.
The investigation by the Rome public prosecutor then intervenes on an important operation and at a particularly delicate time. Astaldi boasts 10 thousand employees, a turnover of 3 billion and an order portfolio of twenty billion. The rescue plan of the second Italian construction group is based on the irrevocable acquisition offer received from the first group, ie Salini Impregilo. In the Salini offer, it is estimated that as many as 500,000 people are directly or indirectly involved in the fate of national and international companies in the two groups involved in the ‘Progetto Italia’ operation.
The court accepted the arrangement e the meeting of creditors is fixed for the approval to the 6 February 2020. Right now it turns out that two of the three commissioners are being investigated on corruption charges for have asked the assessor of that plan, the full professor of business economics de La Sapienza, Corrado Gatti, the asseveration of a higher compensation compared to the lows.
The commissioner Francesco Rocchi, a Roman accountant, according to the prosecutors, would have been protagonist of the request made in the first days of February 2019 e intercepted from Guardia di Finanza. The remuneration of the commissioners is commensurate with the assets and liabilities. Since Astaldi boasts debts for 3 billion and a half, it is clear that the compensation, although the percentage is minimal, is very high, even dividing it by three.
Rocchi would have asked Gatti to include in his report an indication on the remuneration equal to the average of the tariff and not to the minimums, the compensation in this way would be rose by about 21 million to about 36 million in total, 12 million each.
In the Gatti report on first proposal of arrangement presented after that phone call the indication of the average rates would have been included, that is 36 million divided by three. Then later, however, the fees were reduced to the minimum in the updated plan presented in June 2019 and implemented by the Court in August. In the final version, in fact, we are back to the legal minimums, around 21 million euros.
There corruption obviously it must all be demonstrated. The hypothesis would be that the public official Rocchi, because these are considered the commissioners, would have asked Ambrosini for a usefulness to the private, that is to say to Professor Gatti, and that in some way doing so he would enslaved the function of public subject which was to implement the proposed agreement including the report by Gatti himself, appointed by the private company Astaldi.
Astaldi is a company quoted at the stock exchange and on August 5, the Rome court, with a specific decree, admitted the Company to the procedure of composition with creditors as a going concern, approving the plan and the composition proposal presented by Astaldi and asserted by a report by Gatti.
The delicacy of the investigation is evident. For the approval of the irrevocable offer received from Salini Impregilo, the court set the hearing with the creditors and the vote for 6 February 2020. At the moment the payments to the commissioners anyway have not been carried out. In these hours the rumor has spread that Commissioner Rocchi has resigned. On the Company's website, however, no communique appeared to this effect.
There is then a second strand of investigation. In this case the alleged crime would be theincitement to corruption towards Stefano Ambrosini and a Roman professional, Marco Costantini. The thesis of the prosecution, also based on wiretapping, is yet to be demonstrated. Ambrosini would have thought of giving Costantini an assignment. However, since this professional is considered close to the president of the bankruptcy section of the court Antonino La Malfa, the two would have thought of a ruse. President La Malfa, who has nothing to do with the investigation and was oblivious to everything, would not have liked the appointment of a friend of his by Ambrosini (appointed by him commissioner) in one procedure which fell under the section he directed. Then, again according to the accusation hypothesis, Ambrosini would have thought of giving the assignment to a third company which then would have made him work and earn Marco Costantini. Unbeknownst to the judge La Malfa. Also in this case we are dealing with very technical and complex situations, difficult to classify in criminal cases.
The survey concerns highly esteemed personalities in the bankruptcy section and more generally from Roman institutions. Marco Costantini, for example, was in charge of the role of asseverator in the insolvency procedure of atac. In essence he carried out for the public transport company of the Municipality of Rome the same role held by Gatti for Astaldi.
Stefano Ambrosini he is practically the most important professional in the sector. In 2011 Berlusconi appointed him extraordinary commissioner of Alitalia with two other professionals. The Minister of Development of the Renzi government Federica Guidi appointed him extraordinary commissioner of Tirrenia is Siremar. It is also named in many other procedures: Itavia, Infocontact, Bertone SpA, Asa Consortium. Carries out the role of judicial commissioner as well as in Astaldi Salvatore Maugeri Irccs Foundation, to the Port of Imperia, to the Fashion Network of the Burani Group and also to the Grandi Molini Italiani.