Jaume Matas faces lengthy prison term.

17-11-2014EFE

The  Audiencia Provincial (High Court) in the Balearics has declared that payments in black money were made by organisers of the Partido Popular election campaigns in 2003 and 2007 when Jaume Matas was candidate for the presidency and which were not reflected in the official accounts for election expenses permitted.  The former treasurer of the PP in the Balearics, Fernando Areal, who is also the brother-in-law of Jaume Matas, will be sent to trial on the basis of charges related to the 2007 campaign, as those regarding 2003 are no longer applicable because of the statute of limitations.  The anti-corruption prosecutor, Pedro Horrach, has called for three years imprisonment and a fine of 15,000 euros for an electoral offence. Areal has been cited by the judge examining matters pertaining to the so-called Palma Arena case, José Castro, who has personally notified Areal of the trial on account of alleged irregularities in election expenses.  As part of the judge’s investigations, he is also requiring Areal to post a bond for civil liability of 20,000 euros. In the judicial resolution issued by the court which will see Areal join others who are accused, there is reference to the confession made by the administrator of the Nimbus advertising agency, Miguel Romero - a case against whom has been archived - of a total of 71,958 euros in black money having been paid.  This amount was not noted in the party’s accounts, for which Areal had control, and which therefore suggests falsification of expenses.  A raid on the offices of Nimbus produced various documents related to the election campaign that support the belief that payments were made in black.  Though the statute of limitations applies to the 2003 election, the court’s resolution notes that Nimbus could have been involved in a similar fashion then, as reports from the Tax Agency suggest there were sums in black money that exceeded legal limits in the form of grants.

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