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Spanish king's son-in-law

Iñaki Urdangarin to be charged with misappropriation of funds

News Agencies

According to reports by El País, he will also be charged with corruption, fraud and document forgery.

  • Spanish king's son-in-law Iñaki Urdangarin. Photo: EFE

    Spanish king's son-in-law Iñaki Urdangarin. Photo: EFE

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Spanish king's son-in-law will be charged with four different crimes that include misappropriation of funds, corruption, fraud and document forgery, Spanish newspaper El País reported on Monday quoting court sources.

According to the same sources, Judge Jose Castro believes there is enough evidence to charge Inaki Urdangarin, the Duke of Palma, with four different charges that would not include tax evasion.

Spanish king's son-in-law appeared in court last month to answer questions about suspected fraudulent deals. At that time, the Duke of Palma had not been charged with a crime but was being probed by a judge about whether he used his privileged position to secure lucrative deals for a nonprofit foundation he ran, then fraudulently diverted some of the money for personal benefit.

The investigation into the alleged financial misdeeds has embarrassed the monarchy in a country hard hit by a financial crisis and sky-high unemployment and ranks among the worst public relations mishaps the royal household has experienced in the 36-year reign of King Juan Carlos.

As news of the investigation began to fill Spanish newspapers last year, King Juan Carlos announced in December that his son-in-law would no longer take part in official ceremonies with the rest of the family.

Urdangarin, who lives in the U.S., is a former professional and Olympic handball player who acquired his title by marrying the king's daughter, Cristina, Duchess of Palma.

The case against Urdangarin is one of several big fraud scandals in Spanish courts, most dating from a property and urban development boom when local governments went on spending sprees before the global financial bubble burst.

The duke is suspected of securing large contracts from regional governments for his foundation, then subcontracting the work to private companies he also oversaw, sometimes charging the public unrealistically inflated prices and syphoning some of the income to offshore tax havens.

The duke's alleged misdeeds took place in 2004-2006. Urdangarin, the princess and their four children moved to Washington, D.C., in 2009 as the investigation began to heat up.