to El Sardinero, self-defined as a "leading company in food services", business
started soon. In early 2017, it dispatched thousands of Clap combos for
Cobiserta, a company attached to the Táchira State Government, with which Group
Grand Limited signed in late 2016 a contract to supply the program of the
Venezuelan Government. At the time of the agreement between Group Grand Limited
- the holding registered in Hong Kong by Saab and Pulido - and the State
Government of Táchira, in western Venezuela, the governor of the State was José
Gregorio Vielma Mora, a captain of the army of Hugo Chavez's batch, former
director of the national tax agency and then Minister of Foreign Trade of
Nicolás Maduro for a few months.
October 18, the assistant attorney general of Mexico pointed at the network
created around Group Grand Limited, with
which the duo of Colombian entrepreneurs organized all their import
"The presence of several operators was detected, like Alex X, apparently related
to Government authorities of that country, as well as Álvaro X, Emmanuel X,
Santiago X and Andrés X, who, with the purpose of obtaining the food products to
be supplied to the Venezuelan Government, resort to other companies in different
countries, including Mexico." He was referring to Alex Saab and Álvaro Pulido,
but also to representatives of
Group Grand Limited in Mexico,
Santiago Uzcátegui Pinto, Andrés Eduardo León Rodríguez and Emmanuel Enrique
Rubio González, son of Álvaro Pulido, who changed his name shortly after 2000,
originally Germán Rubio. The General Prosecutor, Luisa Ortega Díaz, dismissed by
Nicolás Maduro, denounced in last year’s August that the Venezuelan president
was behind Group Grand Limited.
recent bill, dated July 7, 2018, reveals that El Sardinero maintains food
supplies for the Claps in partnership with Colombian entrepreneurs, although no
longer through Group Grand Limited. The company now invoices the goods to
Asasi Food FZC, a
company registered in the United Arab Emirates, which has replaced Group Grand
Limited in the Saab-Pulido network.
The customs figures also confirm that the business of El Sardinero is running.
In the first half of this year, it sent almost 100,000 tons of food to
Venezuela, which makes it the Mexican company the largest exporter of products
to the South American country.