The declaration and cross-examination of Diego Torres went on far longer than had been scheduled but it came to an end around 1pm yesterday, which meant that it was time for his ex-business partner, Iñaki Urdangarin, the husband of Princess of Cristina, to make his declarations and face questioning.
Asked by chief prosecutor, Pedro Horrach, about a payment of 300,000 euros to Nóos for managing the project for an office for the Banesto cycling team, Urdangarin denied that it had been some form of commission. "I have never sought a commission for anything," he stated. Earlier, Urdangarin's lawyer had asked Torres about this payment from the government of Jaume Matas. Torres had replied that it was not a commission for Urdangarin's role as a "fixer" for obtaining team sponsorship.
In other exchanges with Horrach, Urdangarin said of invoices raised by Nóos that he was not the administrator and "did not know about these things". Asked who it was who arranged contracts, he replied that it was the Nóos advisor, Miguel Tejeiro. On the existence of apparently fictitious employees, Urdangarin replied: "I would say no. I don't know." Horrach then asked gruffly who it was who negotiated agreements and budgets for Nóos, Urdangarin having repeatedly said that it wasn't him.
The questioning ended at 3pm and the court will reconvene on Wednesday morning. Extra days have been allocated, meaning that Princess Cristina, the last of the accused to appear, may now not do so until as late as Monday week.
Earlier, Torres was adamant that the Royal Household had total control of activities at Nóos, which even went so far as the type of printers that should be bought.
Torres explained that the Royal Household received all information from Nóos in order to ensure that nothing wrong was being done. This had been something, he said, which gave Nóos "additional peace of mind". Nothing was done, he suggested, without the consent of the Royal Household. For this reason, he argued, that there couldn't have been any illegal actions as they were always under supervision.
Torres maintained that Nóos lost money on contracts it had with public administrations because it charged below the market rate. In this regard, he was intimating that he and Urdangarin had not pocketed millions from public funds in an unjustified fashion. In explaining costs for the forums organised by Nóos in Palma and Valencia, Torres said that the Davos economic forum had been a point of reference for them.
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