The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Spanish court subpoenas king's daughter as suspect in tax fraud and money laundering probe

  • Print

MADRID - A Spanish court on Tuesday subpoenaed Princess Cristina, the daughter of Spain's King Juan Carlos, as a suspect in an investigation of alleged tax fraud and money laundering — the latest blow to the royal family's reputation.

Palma de Mallorca court investigating magistrate Jose Castro ordered the 48-year-old princess to appear March 8 for questioning about her partnership with her husband Inaki Urdangarin in a firm called Aizoon.

Urdangarin is already under investigation for allegedly using his position to embezzle several million dollars in public contracts assigned to the Noos Institute, a supposedly non-profit foundation he set up, and channel the funds to other business, among them Aizoon.

Last year, the court cancelled a subpoena for the princess to answer questions about the Noos case but said she could still be called to answer questions regarding possible tax fraud and money laundering as the investigation proceeded.

The 2013 summons had been a first for a member of the king's immediate family.

Neither the princess nor her husband has been formally charged with any crime. Any charges would come at the end of the investigation if the investigating magistrate decides there is sufficient evidence for a trial, court spokeswoman Maria Ferrer said.

The probes have seriously damaged the image of 76-year-old Juan Carlos — once one of Spain's most respected figures — and eroded Spaniards' admiration for their royal family, especially as the investigations have coincided with a severe economic crisis that has widened the gap between rich and poor.

In Tuesday's court document, Judge Castro described the accounting at Aizoon as "opaque" and said the princess did not declare her earnings from the company. He added that the princess appeared to have maintained an attitude of "looking the other way" in her husband's business affairs.

Cristina is the youngest of the king's two daughters. She works for the Caixa bank's social and cultural foundation and is currently based in Geneva.

Urdangarin is a former professional handball player and an Olympic medallist for Spain. The deals he and his Noos business partner brokered included organizing seminars and sports events as a tourism lure. However, some events were allegedly charged for but never took place or were charged at unusually high rates.

The royal family sidelined Urdangarin from all official royal activities in 2012 and later removed him from the family website.

Comment from the Royal Palace was not immediately available Tuesday.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Preview of Small Things at PTE Mainstage

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • JOE BRYKSA/WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Local- A large osprey lands in it's nest in a hydro pole on Hyw 59  near the Hillside Beach turnoff turn off. Osprey a large narrow winged hawk which can have a wingspan of over 54 inches are making a incredible recovery since pesticide use of the 1950's and  1960's- For the last two decades these fish hawks have been reappearing in the Lake Winnipeg area- Aug 03, 2005
  • RUTH BONNEVILLE / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS June 23, 2011 Local - A Monarch butterfly is perched on a flower  in the newly opened Butterfly Garden in Assiniboine Park Thursday morning.

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Who will you vote for in Wednesday's mayoral race?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google