Spain’s Princess Cristina On Trial In Fraud Case | WakaWaka Reporters
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Spain’s Princess Cristina On Trial In Fraud Case

Spain’s Princess Cristina has become the first member of the country’s royal family to be put on trial.

She is charged with being an accomplice in an alleged embezzlement scam involving her husband and 16 other defendants, who all deny the charges.

Princess Cristina, 50, faces eight years in jail if found guilty by a three-member panel of judges.
The trial in Palma, Majorca is seen as an embarrassment for the royal family.

Princess Cristina arrived at the court in Palma on Monday with her husband, Inaki Urdangarin, who is accused of embezzlement and money laundering. They made no statement to reporters.

As the judges read out the charges, the princess sat at the back of three rows of defendants in a makeshift courtroom at a public administration school in Palma. Her husband sat in the same row but court rules prevented them from sitting together.

Mr Urdangarin’s supposedly non-profit Noos Institute sports foundation was allegedly used as a vehicle to win falsely inflated contracts from regional government bodies, before channelling the money to personal accounts via tax havens.

Noos is alleged to have received more than €6m (£4.4m; $6.5m) of public money, most of it from the Balearic Islands and Valencia regional governments.

If found guilty, Mr Urdangarin could face 19 years and six months in jail.

The charges

  • Princess Cristina is charged with being an accomplice to tax fraud, relating to the financial years 2007 and 2008. The private prosecution accusing her wants a jail sentence of eight years
  • Inaki Urdangarin is accused of using the Noos Institute and associated companies to embezzle public funds amounting to €5.6m and is also accused of fraud, influence peddling and money laundering, among other offences. The public prosecutor wants a jail sentence of 19.5 years for the king’s brother-in-law
  • There are 16 other defendants in the case, including Diego Torres, Mr Urdangarin’s former partner at Noos, and Jaume Matas, a former government minister and former chief of the Balearic Islands regional government
  • Mr Torres could face more than 16 years in jail on similar charges to Mr Urdangarin, while Mr Matas could face 11 years, having already served a nine-month term for corruption. (BBC)