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para que pusiera allí sus fichas

English translation: which became his personal domain/ free field of operation

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11:21 Sep 13, 2011
Spanish to English translations [PRO]
Bus/Financial - Business/Commerce (general)
Spanish term or phrase: para que pusiera allí sus fichas
The full context is given below and it is basically about corruption related to the granting of mining permits in a LATAM country. Basically a local government awarded a permit or permits provided that all "fichas" were controlled by a certain congressman. But what exactly are these? Could refer to hiring, contracting, to provision of worker ID cards or other documentation for working at the mine, or does it imply that everything had to go though the said congressman. Just what are the "fichas" referred to here?

El gobierno de XXXXX, según lo han denunciado varios artículos de prensa, le dio esta entidad para que pusiera allí sus fichas al entonces congresista conservador XXXXXX, quien después, fue condenado por la Corte Suprema de Justicia por concierto para delinquir........... .

Best wishes. Sian.
Sian Bowen
United Kingdom
Local time: 21:04
English translation:which became his personal domain/ free field of operation
Explanation:
Very interesting translation problem! To me, the whole 'fichas' thing is, pretty clearly, un modismo: poner/jugar fichas > to play, to operate.

The charge is that the govt put this legislator in charge of the national mining agency, and he presided over an orgy of corruption, with mining permits being granted on a massive scale in return for bribes; also that he worked in concert with paramilitary forces/'death squads' as enforcers.

In other words, this congressman 'Mengano' could 'poner sus fichas', play, operate.

So, two possible suggestions: the mining agency became 'his personal domain', or it became a 'free field of operation' for him.

Examples: (1) "In Serbia, for example, the Security Information Agency (BIA), which previously .... The [Z] gang's main field of operation was ..." (http://www.etc-graz.at/cms/fileadmin/user_upload/humsec/Work... (2) "Keep in mind that the internet is a free field of operation for fraudsters and delinquents of all sorts. Armed with personal information of you these persons can..." (www.kissburg.com/Dating-Articles/Find-Me.aspx).... (3) "And both doctrines are presented to him under the authority of the State, the taxes he ...... and he has, for a while, a free field of operations. ...... They are germs of corruption spreading disease wherever they go..." (Max Nordau, The Conventional Lies of Our Civilization; http://www.artandpopularculture.com/The_Conventional_Lies_of... (4) "Egypt became his personal domain, inaccessible for senators without imperial authorisation..." (Laurent Bricault, M. J. Versluys, P. G. P. Meyboom, Nile into Tiber: Egypt in the Roman world : proceedings of the...; http:books.google.com)

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Note added at 57 mins (2011-09-13 12:19:05 GMT)
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Alternate sentence: The Fulano government...placed the conservative then-congressman Mengano in charge of the agency, which became his field of operation (or: personal domain). He was subsequently convicted...

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Note added at 2 hrs (2011-09-13 13:26:07 GMT)
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Just a quick note: what the legislator was given control of was not a concession but rather the whole agency (Ingeominas). Saludos! - PJD
Selected response from:

Pablo Julián Davis
Local time: 15:04
Grading comment
Many thanks. Sian.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
4 +1which became his personal domain/ free field of operation
Pablo Julián Davis
4to play his cards (in)
neilmac


Discussion entries: 3





  

Answers


1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
to play his cards (in)


Explanation:
Maintains the gambling metaphor o some degree. PJD's answer seems to be on track.

neilmac
Spain
Local time: 22:04
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in category: 503
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

47 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
which became his personal domain/ free field of operation


Explanation:
Very interesting translation problem! To me, the whole 'fichas' thing is, pretty clearly, un modismo: poner/jugar fichas > to play, to operate.

The charge is that the govt put this legislator in charge of the national mining agency, and he presided over an orgy of corruption, with mining permits being granted on a massive scale in return for bribes; also that he worked in concert with paramilitary forces/'death squads' as enforcers.

In other words, this congressman 'Mengano' could 'poner sus fichas', play, operate.

So, two possible suggestions: the mining agency became 'his personal domain', or it became a 'free field of operation' for him.

Examples: (1) "In Serbia, for example, the Security Information Agency (BIA), which previously .... The [Z] gang's main field of operation was ..." (http://www.etc-graz.at/cms/fileadmin/user_upload/humsec/Work... (2) "Keep in mind that the internet is a free field of operation for fraudsters and delinquents of all sorts. Armed with personal information of you these persons can..." (www.kissburg.com/Dating-Articles/Find-Me.aspx).... (3) "And both doctrines are presented to him under the authority of the State, the taxes he ...... and he has, for a while, a free field of operations. ...... They are germs of corruption spreading disease wherever they go..." (Max Nordau, The Conventional Lies of Our Civilization; http://www.artandpopularculture.com/The_Conventional_Lies_of... (4) "Egypt became his personal domain, inaccessible for senators without imperial authorisation..." (Laurent Bricault, M. J. Versluys, P. G. P. Meyboom, Nile into Tiber: Egypt in the Roman world : proceedings of the...; http:books.google.com)

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 57 mins (2011-09-13 12:19:05 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Alternate sentence: The Fulano government...placed the conservative then-congressman Mengano in charge of the agency, which became his field of operation (or: personal domain). He was subsequently convicted...

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2 hrs (2011-09-13 13:26:07 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Just a quick note: what the legislator was given control of was not a concession but rather the whole agency (Ingeominas). Saludos! - PJD

Example sentence(s):
  • The Fulano government...handed Mengano, then a conservative congressman, control of the agency as his free field of operation. He was subsequently convicted by the Supreme Court...
Pablo Julián Davis
Local time: 15:04
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in SpanishSpanish, Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 20
Grading comment
Many thanks. Sian.
Notes to answerer
Asker: Hola Pablo, and that makes sense. Yes it was a tricky one! Some translations that capture this sense might be "give him a free hand" "allow him carte blanche over the operation of the concession". Many thanks. Points ot follow. Sian.


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Gallagy: or "gave him free rein over the operation"
9 hrs
  -> Thanks gallagy2 - Pablo Julián
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