Telecom Executive Linked to Peppertree Capital in Hot Water in El Salvador

Photo of author

By LatAm Reports Staff Writers

Jorge Gaitan, a Guatemalan businessman involved in the telecommunications sector, has been named by the Fiscalía General de la República (FGR) (Attorney General) as a person of interest in an investigation, according to a report published in Salvadoran news outlet Ultima Hora.

According to Revista El Espectador, the authorities are seeking the capture of Jorge Alberto Gaitán Castro, along with his father, Jorge Gaitan Paredes, as well as Carol Odette Echeverría Cabrera de Reyes, Marisabel Umaña Velásquez y Juan Ignacio Berger Jiménez. The report indicates the group allegedly “took advantage of their positions within the companies to divert exorbitant amounts of money.”

According to one popular YouTuber, Mr. Gaitan’s involvement in El Salvador points to a relationship in question between Gaitan and Roberto José d’Aubuisson, the former mayor of Santa Tecla, who is accused by the FGR of involvement in a corruption scheme involving the company Collocation Technologies El Salvador.

Gaitan’s ties to Peppertree Capital Management

Gaitan formerly acted as a regional manager for the tower company Continental Towers, however was fired from his position by majority shareholders in October 2021 after discovering instances of alleged misconduct. According to public record documents filed before the Southern District of New York, Gaitan’s firing is currently being disputed in arbitration, with Chagrin Falls, Ohio-based Peppertree Capital Management continuing to insist that Gaitan remain in his executive position.

According to one cross-petition from the claimants, “Neither Peppertree/AMLQ nor the Company had any right to dictate how the local affiliates of DTH conducted their business, and the tribunal had no authority to intervene. But it did, and on November 12, 2021 the tribunal issued what was effectively a mandatory injunction requiring the local DTH affiliates to rehire Gaitán.”

The accusations against Gaitan are strongly rejected by Peppertree Capital. In an October 2022 letter sent to the arbitration panel, made public record in the SDNY case, Peppertree’s lawyers directly address the possibility of violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in continuing to employ Gaitan, which they reject. In their letter they complain of notifications from DTH on the side of majority shareholders which “attack Mr. Gaitan and Ms. Echeverria, accuse them of wrongdoing, and suggest that their involvement with the Company will result in purported violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) (again, without providing a legal basis for such purported violations).”

According to a media report from December 2023, Peppertree recently raised $1.2 billion for its digital infrastructure fund, including investments from the San Francisco Employees Retirement System (SFERS).

Now that an arrest warrant has been against Gaitan and Echeverria in what appears to be a sweeping corruption case with political overtones in El Salvador, it is not yet known if Peppertree Capital continues to stand behind the wanted executive.