Causes of the Yanson family feud? – 4

By: Modesto P. Sa-onoy

THE public has now a balcony view of the conflict. It could have been avoided but things went wrong when the four children refused to return what they had received. There are valid reasons for this refusal that we shall see later.

Understandably Olivia Yanson wanted to get back the shares to take control of the corporation but to do that she must go to court. And that is what she did. She brought the conflict into the open and allowed the public into their lives and a picture of the family with billions of pesos. I believe she miscalculated the impact of their feud on the public that loves real-life drama of this kind – the wealthy bashing each other. It can no longer be stopped as the mother continues her assault on her children and her two children forcing their way into the company with the use of government resources that leaves a bad taste in the mouth and open the police to suspicion of taking sides for a hefty sum.

But taking back her share is not as easy. So, until now her case is yet to move on and as I cited before, the estimate of RTC Judge Eduardo Sayson is that the litigation could take 25 years. Why? Simply because she must prove that the distribution or partition was illegal but whatever reasons she will present to justify the nullification will be contested.  The road to resolution will be long and hard except for lawyers who will have the field day asking for one postponement after another.

When I learned the story of Neuter, I thought it was an isolated case. But I was puzzled. If this was the cause, how could it be that a mother would exchange the love and respect of her four children for Neuter who is an employee and had allegedly poked a finger into the money bowl? Was there something special in the relationship, more than the ordinary that would make Olivia Yanson take the side of Neuter against her children? It looked incredible.

But the news release from the Yanson 4 (Rey, Celina, Emily, and Ricardo Jr.) somehow cleared the picture a bit. The news report I cited earlier but censored by local print media brings Leo Rey into the picture because of the unexplained expenses.

LRY, as president of the corporation, is supposed to have full control of those pre-signed checks. Did he give Neuter freedom to dispense those checks? If he did then he is responsible if those checks were used for purposes not connected with the company operations. Was Neuter merely an instrument rather than the principal?

It seems so because Neuter was given a clean slate when Neuter was “retired” with full benefits. That is unusual, indeed, although the closeness to Olivia Yanson must be taken into consideration. That arrangement is no business of the public; it is their money after all.

However, as I noted earlier, that would have been the end of it but now we know that Neuter was a cause but not the immediate cause of the rift. The news tells us that Leo Rey failed to explain why he withdrew millions in company funds without the authority of the board.

Were these withdrawals made possible because of the pre-signed checks? It seems so because the checks had to be signed by the President (Leo Rey) and at least the treasurer of the company unless the VTI has only one signatory which is improbable. That Celina Yanson, the treasurer, joined her three other siblings in LRY removal indicates that Leo Roy had to assume the burden of explaining the withdrawals and which he failed to so.

From this perspective, we can understand the actions of the Yanson 4 in unseating a president that cannot explain the unauthorized withdrawals of millions of company funds. However, instead of supporting the four, the mother took the side of Leo Rey. Why? One reason can be that she did not want a favorite child removed and to hell with the consequences! She thought probably that she can undo what the four did and she could do it quickly.

That was a miscalculation as events unfold. Now she is raising the pressure against her four children. Her advisers probably just want to keep this conflict alive.

Let’s continue next week.