Bonum Certa Men Certa

The Spanish EPO Scandal - Part I

El Confidencial



Summary: How García-Escudero Marquez, the sister of a Spanish Senate speaker, got controversially appointed to succeed the (now) EPO's Vice-President Alberto Casado Cerviño

THIS week we shall turn our attention to a potentially very interesting EPO story. In order to kick-start this series we must provide readers with some background, which means translating an article originally written in Spanish. It is, for the most part, self-explanatory. One just needs to know that Alberto Casado Cerviño is Vice-President of Directorate-General Operational Support at the EPO.



El Confidencial, 17.11.2011 – 06:00 H.

Industry [department] appoints Pío García Escudero's sister before the application deadline ends



Ten days before the elections of 20 November, the director general of the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office, Alberto Casado Cerviño, appoints Patricia García-Escudero

[...]

Ten days before the general elections of 20 November [2011], the director-general of the Spanish Office for Patents and Trade-Marks, Alberto Casado Cerniño, appointed Patricia García-Escudero Marquez, the sister of the speaker of the [Partido Popular] in the senate, to a civil service position at the highest level. The post attributed is the one of deputy director of the department of Judicial Coordination and International Relations. The seriousness of the matter is that the legal delay was not respected, and the beneficiary's name appeared of the organisational chart of the entity even though the deadline for applications won't expire until next Tuesday [22 November 2011].

The vacancy notice which led to García-Escudero's appointment was published 1 November and provided 15 working days for filing applications. The appointment announcement of the new deputy director who will lead the communications department, dependent on the Presidential Support Unit, managing one of four departments of the Spanish Patents and Trademarks Office, occurred however last Thursday [10 November 2011].

The cat got out of the bag as the Sevach blog on public law, which explained how all positions with open selection are actually a "chronicle of a job award foretold". The director of the public company [sic - they mean the SPTO] which is subordinated to the Department of Industry, Commerce and Tourism designated a person related to the [Partido Popular] precisely at the time when polls show [Partido Popular politician] Mariano Rajoy as the winner of the elections coming next Sunday [against the PSOE incumbent José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero].

In this specific case, the qualifications required to lead the Department of Judicial Coordination and International Relations required a superior command of English and French, but a degree in Law wasn't deemed essential. Patricia García-Escudera holds a diploma in Biology from the Complutense University in Madrid. Furthermore, the call for applications demanded preferably experience in communications and marketing. Coincidentally, the sister of the [Partido Popular] speaker in the senate came from the public relations department of the [SPTO]. "Computer skills" are also demanded for this high-ranking position for which any civil servant can apply for, but without requiring any corresponding university diploma.

50,000 Euros gross salary per year plus productivity bonus

The position for which Casado Cerviño appointed García-Escudero comes with a specific allowance of 24,332 Euros to which should be added the A-category allowance (13,935 Euros plus 535 euros every three years) as well as the allowance for belonging to level 30, at the top of the scale (11,625 Euros). In addition to this gross annual salary received, a productivity bonus will be included, dependent on the specific personal contract. In many positions of the same category this can often exceed 1,000 Euros per month.

If this favour to the [Partido Popular] isn't enough for Casado Cerviño to keep his directorial job in case of a change of government, his son Alberto Casado Fernándes will sit on 30 November the fourth selection examination for admission of qualified professionals at the autonomous bodies dependent on the entity where his father works.


Context will be provided in future parts of this series, so stay tuned and protect our right to free speech, e.g. by attending staff protests. It reminds us of the story of Bergot's controversial appointment, which we covered earlier this month (see part one, part two, part three, and part four of "EPO: It's Like a Family Business").

"No government can love a child, and no policy can substitute for a family`s care."

--Hillary Clinton



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