Former members of the Spanish ruling party found benefited from corruption and sentenced to jail

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Series Details May 2018
Publication Date 25/05/2018
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On 24 May 2018, the Spanish High Court convicted 29 people, including former senior officials of Prime Minister’s Popular Party (PP), and sentenced them to a total of 351 years in prison in one of the country’s biggest corruption scandals in modern history.

The court also found that the PP itself benefited from a massive graft scheme involving kickbacks in exchange for public contracts to businesses, and ordered the PP to repay around €245,000, making it the first national political party in Spain to be reprimanded in a graft case.

The 29 politicians and businesspeople convicted on Thursday include former PP treasurer Luis Bárcenas, who was sentenced to 33 years in jail for money laundering, bribery and other related offences. Bárcenas, the former treasurer of Spain’s ruling Popular Party (PP), has been convicted for amassing an offshore fortune as a fixer arranging contracts between public authorities and private companies.

A former PP mayor of Majadahonda in the region of Madrid, Guillermo Ortega, was also sentenced to 38 years in prison. Former PP health minister Ana Mato was found to have benefited from the graft scheme and ordered to repay €28,000.

The so-called Gürtel case centred on Francisco Correa, a businessman with close ties to the PP who was accused of paying bribes to party officials between 1999 and 2006 in return for contracts to carry out public works and organise events. The investigation was codenamed Gürtel, the German word for correa (belt). Correa was sentenced to 51 years in prison.

Related Links
Euronews, 24.05.18: Spain's ruling party caught up in corruption trial
Politico, 24.05.18: Spain’s ruling party rocked by major corruption case
Politico, 25.05.18: Corruption scandal threatens to topple Spanish government
The Telegraph, 24.05.18: Former treasurer of Spain’s ruling party found guilty of defrauding government in massive corruption scandal
Deutsche Welle, 24.05.18: Spain's ruling PP ex-treasurer, Luis Barcenas among 29 sentenced for corruption
The Guardian, 24.05.18: Court finds Spain's ruling party benefited from bribery scheme
BBC News, 24.05.18: Gurtel corruption case: Spanish ruling party officials found guilty
El País, 24.05.18: Governing Popular Party and its ex-treasurer, sentenced in massive corruption case

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