The former city manager talks about the city harassing and shutting down small businesses in Little Havana
Emilio Gonzalez, a former Miami City manager, testified under oath that he witnessed certain small businesses being targeted and were forced to shut down in Little Havana by Miami Commissioner Joe Carollo.
This eruptive transcript has been released as part of an ongoing lawsuit that’s making its way through federal courts, allegedly saying that the City of Miami has, in the past, deliberately harassed and shut down a few businesses in Little Havana where the commissioner had a political dispute.
Emilio Gonzalez’s testimony opens floodgates on Carollo
Although the attorneys tried to keep the testimony from Emilio Gonzalez confidential, US District Judge Lissette Reid said that it has to be made public.
The businesses targeted are owned by Ben Bush, William Fuller, Martin Pinilla, and Zack Bush. Carollo’s alleged feud resulted in these business closures with a loss of $27.91 million.
Emilio Gonzalez held Miami’s city manager position from 2018 to 2020. The interview that was made public was recorded in Feb 2021 and June 2022.
According to the former Miami City manager’s testimony, his administration’s relationship with the commissioner went downhill after he started making forced efforts to target these businesses for violations.
Miami city administration, the office of attorney Victoria Mendez, and the office of commissioner Joe Carollo have been silent about the situation.
Allegations against Carollo go way back
Though efforts were made to keep the allegations private, Judge Reid ruled that the testimony must not be kept secret from the public.
Emilio Gonzalez also said that Commissioner Carollo was very upset about the testimony. He quoted that attorney Mendez called him to suggest it would not be in his best interest to testify. She also told him that he should be going to great lengths to make Carollo happy, to which he replied that he would testify when called to tell the truth.
These are not the first allegations made against Carollo. Former chief of police Art Acevedo previously alleged that the Cuban mafia was running Miami. His comments led to him getting fired last year.
Carollo has denied these allegations constantly. Subscribe to our newsletter for the latest news in this developing story and the profound effect it has on the special area we call “Calle Ocho”.
Calle Ocho is made up of businesses owned by families that fled “ communist dictatorship” so we do not tolerate any ideals that thwart entrepreneurship and we stand behind the small businesses that have been targeted for years now.
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