25 May 2018
Luis Barcenas, former treasurer of ruling People’s Party was convicted of receiving bribes, money laundering and tax crimes. He was handed a 33-year jail term and fined €44m. Bárcenas was once a close ally of the prime minister, Mariano Rajoy. Bárcenas’s wife, Rosalía Iglesias, was jailed for 15 years.
People’s party (PP) was fined €240,000
A leading businessman, Francisco Correa, bribed party officials between 1999 and 2006 in return for contracts for public works and to organise events. Correa was sentenced to 51 years in prison, and his assistant Pablo Crespo was jailed for 37 years and six months. Correa’s ex-wife, Carmen Rodríguez Quijano was given 14 years and eight months. BBC reported.
In 2017, the anti-corruption prosecutor in charge of this investigation resigned after it emerged he held a 25% stake in an offshore company in Panama.
The bribes were kept in a slush fund in a Swiss bank and was used to pay for the party and senior officials including Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy, who vehemently denies having received any money from the slush fund.
There is also corruption at high levels. Entrepreneur Iñaki Urdangarín (King Felipe VI’s brother-in-law) and former International Monetary Fund chief Rodrigo Rato were among those sentenced to prison recently in Spain.