Spanish public prosecutors are not going to abandon the investigations opened against former king Juan Carlos I for the use of financially-opaque credit cards despite the fact that the ex-head of state has regularized his fiscal situation via a back-tax payment of over 678,000 euros. This was stated by the prosecution service this afternoon, in a press statement explaining that the justice officials will assess the scope of the tax return submitted by Juan Carlos, "its spontaneity, veracity and completeness in the framework of a broader investigation that will continue to be carried out by the public prosecutors' office of the Supreme Court".
The announcement comes after it became known yesterday that the prosecutors serving the Supreme Court had warned Spain's king emeritus in early November that there were two court proceedings open to investigate his fortune. This is of key importance, since the fact that Juan Carlos knew that he was under investigation could neutralize the attempt to regularize his massive tax debt.
A royal regularization?
Under Spanish law, a tax offence can only be avoided if the debt is paid before the tax agency or court notifies that proceedings have been opened. In the case of the king emeritus, it was made public in June that proceedings had been opened by Supreme Court prosecutors to investigate the commissions he allegedly received from Saudi Arabia. And in early November, due diligence on a second case, that of the credit cards whose costs were covered by a third party, was announced.
Therefore, prosecutors will continue to investigate whether the payment of exactly 678,393.72 euros to the Spanish Treasury, as announced by his lawyer, Javier Sánchez-Junco, can be regarded as a regularization as such, and whether it would serve to neutralize an investigation into this money.
678,000 euros to 'Hacienda'
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the lawyer reported that former Spanish king Juan Carlos had “instructed him to announce publicly that, today, he has presented a declaration without prior demand to the competent tax authorities that resulted in a tax debt, which has now been paid, to a value of 678,393.72 euros, including interest and surcharges”. The lawyer states that "in any case, king Juan Carlos continues, as always, to be at the disposal of the Public Prosecutor's Office for any procedure or action it deems appropriate."