LUMA Energy’s CEO, Wayne Stensby, is under arrest

MIAMI – Puerto Rico’s Troubled Electric system decades ago of mismanagement and corruption, bankruptcy and then Hurricane Maria, die destroyed power lines and submerged the island in darkness. Five months ago, the government the network privatized in an attempt to leave past problems behind and rebuild.

But the first few months of privatization led to more power malfunctions. And now, the head of the new electricity company is under a arrest deposit.

On Wednesday, a judge in Puerto Rico has issued an order to detain the chief executive of the electric company, LUMA Energy, accuses him of to not satisfy with a court order to provide documents to lawmakers.

In a dramatic escalation die caused An frenzy on the island, Judge Anthony Cuevas Ramos of the court of first instance in San Juan has the arrest order for Wayne Stensby, the head of LUMA Energy, the private Canadian-American consortium that started operating the power transmission and distribution system in June.

local news outlets in Puerto Rico broadcast video of deputies arrived at company headquarters, but it was unclear of mr. Stensby was inside.

The judge held Mr Stensby in contempt of court a day after ruling that the company had until 5 p.m. Tuesday to submit the documents requested by the Puerto Rico House in to serve of Representatives, where critics of the company is investigating of its executives get high salaries at the cost of of in taking service more – and more experienced — line workers.

Below the requested documents are details over the salaries of top managers of the company; how it takes a lot of employees to run the system; and receipts and timesheets die submitted by employees, consultants and contractors.

“Unjustified delays cannot be sponsored of blessed by this court,” the judge wrote in its strongly worded mission. “We consider them a mockery of our judicial system” system.”

“No one is above the law,” he says added. “NO ONE.”

In a statement on Wednesday evening Mr Stensby said his company had complied with the application for documents and submitted more than 10,000 records.

“Above all,” he said, “we want the Puerto Rican people until know that LUMA is absolutely committed to transparency and compliance with all legitimate current and future document requests.”

Puerto Rico Privatized Its Electricity Grid After Decades of mismanagement and corruption public utility company, the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, die still the power generation for the island’s 1.5 million electrical customers. After the private business took over power delivery in June the disruptions got longer and more frequent. Puerto Ricans took to the street in protest and demanded that the company’s contract be cancelled.

Governor Pedro R. Pierluisi told reporters: on Wednesday that the company should meet with the court order.

“As I have said before, the law applies equally to everyone and must be followed,” said Mr Pierluisi, of the new progressive party. He insisted he saw no need to cancel the contract, a move which he said the electricity supply to Puerto Ricans on… risk.

Mr Stensby argued: in hearings before both the legislature and the Puerto Rico Congress determined that his company was not required to disclose information, such as executive salaries, because it is a private business. But lawmakers refuted that the fragile grid – and the money assigned to pay the company’s $115 million annual fee and system – used to be public. Congress set aside almost $10 billion in rebuild the system after Hurricane Maria net had destroyed in 2017, leave the whole island in the dark.

The company lost repeated attempts in court to avoid providing the documents.

After the arrest order for mr. Stensby, lawyers for the company said: in submit to a court that they filed the records. But lawyers for Representative Luis Raúl Torres, the legislator who sued for the documents, said: in a defense that the submission turned out to be incomplete. The judge gave Mr. Torres’ office an hour to think out if documents are missing.

Mr Torres, of the Popular Democratic Party, said: in An news conference held in the Capitol he had asked the court for for more time to review the documents, die thousands were of pages long. The judge then gave lawyers for both sides three hours meet and go over the documents, keeping the arrest order in place.

The warrant was issued at 9:17 a.m. local time, according to the filing by Mr. Torres’ lawyers. The company handed over over a USB drive with the documents at 9:48 am

The lawyers were unable to reach an agreement, but the judge suspended the arrest late order on Wednesday afternoon and called back the delegates sent to arrest Mr Stenby. In an emergency hearing, he said he would not withdraw the injunction until the company and lawmakers agreed that all documents had been submitted.

He gave them until 5 p.m. Monday.

“It’s the only cure of resort die I have available insist people – of persuade them – to obey,” said Judge Cuevas, “and I have realized” in this case it worked.”

Read More: World News


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