The National Court has condemned sentences of between 3 and a half years in prison and 4 years and 9 months to three defendants who in 2017 and 2018 sold as extra virgin olive oil an adulterated mixture composed of 70 percent sunflower oil and 30 percent olive oil.
In a ruling of conformity, the magistrates of the Fourth Section of the Criminal Chamber condemn the three defendants for crimes of falsification of a commercial document committed by an individual, against the intellectual property and continued scam. In addition, they must compensate the injured parties with the amounts that were defrauded from them.
According to the proven facts of the sentence, in execution of the plan that they had previously devised, acting with the intention of unjust enrichment, the defendants sold five-liter bottles of oil labeled as extra virgin olive oil, but which in reality contained a mixture of sunflower oil and olive oil in an approximate proportion of 70% and 30%.
To obtain the greatest possible profit, they sold these bottles at a price lower than the market price and the price they themselves paid when purchasing them, so that they profited from the difference in price per liter between the oil mixture that they passed off as extra virgin oil. olive oil and the true cost of this type of oil.
The invented brand “Bellum olei”
During the year 2017 and based on the criminal plan that they had previously devised, the sentence states that The defendants put five-liter bottles of ‘Bellum Olei’ brand oil on the market, a brand that they invented themselves and that never had a real existence, stating on the label that it was extra virgin olive oil, with a protected geographical indication ‘aceite de Jaén’.
In reality, the Court indicates, it was a oil mix and, to mislead about its authenticity, the label stated that the oil was produced by a cooperative in Úbeda, Jaenwith health registration number, email and barcode, data that was false.
Likewise, the sentence continues, between 2017 and 2018 the defendants put five-liter bottles of oil on the market stating that they were Carrasqueño’ brand oil, extra virgin olive oil produced by the Cooperative Society. Andalusian ‘Virgin of Perpetual Help’, from Alcaudete (Jaén), “which was not true, since, again, the oil they sold was an adulterated mixture.”