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STAFF REPORTER

PALMA
PALMA Council's legal team is considering whether or not to mount a prosecution in the case of former councillor for planning, Javier Rodrigo de Santos.

De Santos, who is alleged to have spent 50'000 euros in gay bars using a council credit card, is to make his first appearance on April 11 before Judge Ana San José in Palma's Court Number Five on charges of embezzlement of public funds.

The council's legal team are awaiting the formal charge before deciding whether to prosecute themselves, as they are entitled to under Spanish law.
The Balearic anti-corruption prosecutor charged de Santos following an investigation into irregular payments on the council credit card discovered during a routine audit of the council's accounts.

Suspicions arose when the auditors discovered payments on the card made in the middle of the night.
Furthermore, the payments were to companies whose activities did not tally with the services that were supposed to be paid for with the card.
The Mayor of Palma, Aina Calvo, on being informed of the auditors' suspicions, contacted the prosecutor who opened an investigation.
After the scandal broke, de Santos returned the money to the council and put his actions down to ill-health.
He later admitted that he had a drug addiction and checked into a detox clinic.
The PP, the party to which the former head of planning belonged, suspended him.
Catalina Cirer, who was the PP Mayor of Palma when the events occurred, later said that she was not in a position to control de Santos' movements as “I was not his mother”.

She also criticised the council's system of controls, saying they had failed.