Cabinet Chief Marcos Peña has defended Finance Minister Luis Caputo as investigations continue into allegations that Caputo concealed information about his assets in the Cayman Islands from Argentine authorities.
“I stand by him. If I do it’s because I know him”, he said. “He makes his country and the government proud; he gave up everything to come to Argentina”.
“Caputo is one of the 10 or 15 most talented people in finance. We’re debating something prior to his arrival to public office and he’s completely convinced that his papers are in order”, Peña told Alejandro Fantino during América TV’s Animales Sueltos programme.
From August 2009 to July 2015, Caputo was the major shareholder of the Princess International Group based in the Cayman Islands. He held more than 75 percent of the company’s shares.
However, he failed to include this information in legally-required affidavits for the 2014 financial year, which were presented to Argentina’s Anti-Corruption Office (OA) when he became a public servant in December 2015. He also withheld information in 2016 regarding the 2015 financial year. The omission of this kind of information is a crime in Argentina and is punishable with up to two years in prison.
“It will be cleared out in the Judiciary but we have to value everything (about Caputo)”, Peña concluded.