Carlos Massad, Chile's Central Bank president resigned this Monday following a string of financial scandals involving the stealing of privileged information from his office by unfaithful dependents.
Mr. Massad was named Central Bank president in 1997 under the previous Eduardo Frei administration and was ratified for another period in 2002 by Chilean president Ricardo Lagos. His second term would have ended in 2007.
Mr. Massad has a long and distinguished professional and political career in government, academia and as an international consultant with the IMF, World Bank and Untied Nations. As Central Bank president he was much respected by the Chilean business and financial communities.
With a degree from the University of Chile and a Ph.D in Economics from Chicago University he was first involved with the Chilean Central Bank as early as 1967 until 1970. During the General Pinochet dictatorship he was an international consultant and almost totally involved in academia as Economics professor in Chile's top universities and as visiting professor in the University of California.
His demission from the Central Bank comes as a direct consequence of possibly the greatest financial scandal in recent Chilean history involving his supposedly most loyal secretary, involved in a love affair with a private broker to whom she leaked confidential information from Mr. Massad's personal computer.
The brokerage house for which her lover worked, one of the largest in Santiago not only took full advantage of the situation but was later also involved in the sale of stolen bonds from the Chilean Development Corporation to the value of over 100 million US dollars.
To make things even more complicated the Deputy CEO of the Chilean Development Corporation was the son in law of President Ricardo Lagos.
Since mid 2002 the Lagos administration has been rocked by a string of corruption claims involving five members of Congress, who have been stripped of their privileges and face serious Court sentences, and other illegalities in the Public Works Ministry apparently geared to help with funds the financing of political campaigns.
President Lagos was Education and Public Works Minister under the previous Frei administration.