What is actually happening at the ANFI Group?
Apart from newspaper articles in the Spanish Press very little is being said, it appears the members are being kept in the dark. Well I suppose this is nothing unusual in the timeshare industry.
ANFI is owned by two factions on an equal 50/50 basis, on one side are the Spanish owners:
Santiago Santana Cazorla
It appears to have originally started around 2010 When the Norwegian family demanded Sr Cazorla´s resignation. All seemed to be well and no real arguments ensued. Then sometime between 2012 and 2013 it appears that around 8 million euros “disappeared”.
Apparently the Lyng´s noticed the diversion of these funds while a lawsuit was pending between Santana Cazorla and Lopesan at The Court of the First Instance No1 of Las Palmas.
The newspaper La Provincia 7/2/2013 reported that Santana Cazorla provided a Promissory note to avoid foreclosure of ANFI by Lopesan who claimed a debt of 14 million euro.
Lopesan claimed the ANFI Group owed 14 million euros for the land in Tauro purchased from the Cardenas family. Lopesan claimed it was owed this as they had bought a Cardenas debt.
(Source: La Provincia 17/07/2013)
The Norwegian owner instigated criminal proceedings for the misappropriation of funds, at The Court of Instruction No 3 of San Bartelome de Tirajana. It seems that these funds were diverted to the Cazorla company: Hermanos Cazorla, with these being used to pay private debts. His Brother Manuel is also co-accused with the CEO Arturo Ramirez accused as a collaborator.
Again the the Norwegian side is calling for Sr Cazorla to resign. But this may prove difficult because he controls the board of directors. The Lyng´s also asked the judge to take “precautionary measures, including revocation of powers that allow Santana Cazorla to make decisions regardless of their partner”.
As well as the misappropriation of funds, they are also being sued for unfair administration of society. (Which in English can be translated into company).
(source: La Provincia 18/7/2013)
Then on 21/7/2013 La Provincia published a further article stating the intention of the Lyng family to sell their share by that September. The article also said that it would be difficult to find buyers because of the contract that binds the the Lyng and Cazorla families, which gives Sr Cazorla control over the board. It also hinted that there was a race between the Cazorla group and Lopesan to control the tourist industry in the south of the island. It is also understood that Lopesan were also negotiating with the lyng family to acquire their shareholdings. This was highlighted in La Provincia 4/4/2012.
Both these players are not new to controversy. In October 2008 the same newspaper reported that a corruption investigation be opened against the then leader of the Partido Popular in the Canaries, José Manuel Soria Lòpez. Following a complaint by the journalist Carlos Sosa. It was related to a trip in the summer of 2005 to Norway on an invitation by Björn Lyng.
At the time Soria was the President of the Canary Island Government. He and his wife flew with Lyng and his wife by private jet, first to Austria where they enjoyed a concert at the Salzburg music festival. Then travelled to Trondelag Norway and took part in Salmon fishing at the river Namsen.
This happened on the same dates the Prime Minister of Spain Sr Zapetero was visiting Gran Canaria following a major forest fire. Which as he was not there for the Prime Ministers visit, in itself courted some controversy.
It was also around the time that the ANFI project around Tauro was being filed for consideration. Three months later Soria and his wife apparently accepted a vacation at the ANFI del Mar complex.
Also around this time there was a set back for the ANFI proposal in Tauro, it was about to suffer major streamlining, but then miraculously on 20th October 2005 the ANFI draft proposal was accepted unanimously by the council in the interest of the Island of Gran Canaria.
In 2009 The Judge dealing with the investigation, Margarita Verona, dismissed the case stating that no crime was committed. The court accepted that apart from the costs of leasing the private aircraft by Lyng, the flights from Norway to Gran Canaria were paid from the accounts of the politician and his wife.
The court also accepted the statement from the then CEO Calvin Lucock, That Soria had never been hosted free of charge for his stay at ANFI, but paid “with the price set by the company to customers with “good references and financial solvency” “. Whatever that means? I will leave you to decide.
(Source: El Pais, 21/5/2009).
As yet there has been no resolution to the dispute, a debt is still owed to Lopesan, and Mr Lyng jr is reputedly continuing his safaris in Africa, big game hunting. If this is true, how do you the owners feel, after all it is your money that is financing all of this, through your original purchases, upgrades and ongoing maintenance fees. Not to forget the ongoing sale of products that are in contravention of the Supreme Court ruling.
The late Björn Lyng
This is the tip of the proverbial iceberg, So where does this leave you the owners? That is for you to decide, as more information comes to light it will be published on this site, it may take some time as facts need to substantiated and verified before publication.
If you would like to know where you stand and what remedies are open to you, please contact us for free and impartial advice.