King Juan Carlos’ sketchy financial dealings are being investigated in Spain

King Juan Carlos Attends 'Corrida de la Beneficencia' Bullfights

Sometimes I can get tunnel-visioned and think that the biggest royal scandals involve Duchess Kate’s wiglets or shady payoffs from British tabloid journalists. Then I’m reminded that, oh right, the biggest scandals involving royalty usually involve financial impropriety on a massive scale. Why did Prince Andrew’s income dry up so suddenly when Jeffrey Epstein died? Why weren’t the Panama Papers a bigger deal? And what in the world was Spain’s King Juan Carlos up to?? Last year, current Spanish king Felipe had to formally reject his inheritance and trust fund from his father, because the money was some kind of shady off-shore account in which Saudi royals were dumping tens of millions of dollars (and no one knows why!). King Felipe also had to strip his father, the abdicated king, of his stipend, his retirement income, because clearly King Juan Carlos had access to all of those tens of millions of dollars anyway. Well, now all of THIS and more is being investigated:

King Emeritus Juan Carlos I of Spain — who abdicated from the Spanish throne six years ago — is being investigated for alleged corruption by the country’s Supreme Court. The probe into the 82-year-old former monarch was announced Monday by Spain’s Public Prosecutor’s Office and will delve into claims that the former king received kickbacks of up to $100 million for his role in an $8.5 billion Saudi rail contract awarded to a consortium of Spanish firms in 2011.

“This investigation focuses, precisely, on delimiting or ruling out the criminal relevance of the events,” reads a statement from the prosecutor’s office in Madrid. It adds that an investigative team led by financial specialist Juan Ignacio Campos will specifically look at whether the former monarch was involved in criminal activity after his abdication in 2014 and was therefore not covered by the immunity granted to the country’s Head of State.

“It is necessary to carry out new proceedings that directly affect the King Emeritus,” adds the prosecutor’s statement.

Spain’s Zarzuela Palace has yet to respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

[From People]

People Magazine points out that not only is King Juan Carlos being investigated by Spanish authorities, Swiss authorities have also been looking into the $100 million payments, which went into an offshore account in Panama, but the funds might have moved through Swiss banks too. You know who I feel sorry for? King Felipe. He seems like a nice guy who is trying to clean up the royal family’s image and finances and his dad’s old dramas keep coming back to haunt him.

Anyway, People Mag ends their story with this: “Reports in the Swiss-based Tribune de Genève newspaper claim that the funds were initially deposited in the Swiss Mirabaud bank. Then, in 2012, $73 million of it was allegedly transferred to an account owned by Juan Carlos’ alleged mistress, German-born businesswoman Corrina zu Sayn-Wittgenstein, 55.” WHAT. So… let me get this straight… Saudis paid off King Juan Carlos so he would advocate on their behalf on some kind of business deal, and that advocacy was apparently worth $100 million (the f–k??), and then King Juan Carlos gave three-quarters of his bribery to his mistress? And apparently the mistress is suing Spanish intelligence services in British courts because, she says, Spanish intelligence is harassing her because of her intimate knowledge of Juan Carlos’ finances. What the actual f–k.

Spanish Royals attend Easter Mass in Palma de Mallorca

Photos courtesy of Backgrid.

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19 Responses to “King Juan Carlos’ sketchy financial dealings are being investigated in Spain”

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  1. BayTampaBay says:

    Cannot wait until Prince Pedo’s finances are fully investigated.

  2. Chica1971 says:

    He should have left the mistress alone after she caused him the crown. Instead JC stuck the Spanish secret police on her in Monaco, Wittgenstein then sued in European court. Seems like an open secret that JC was on the take, they had very little money after Franco and the Greeks( Sofia’s) were also poor. He sold access and got rich. Never crossed the mistress.
    No wonder everyone gave Letizia a hard time when she and Felipe did not back the Christina’s husband for theft and tax evasion.

    • notasugarhere says:

      Same Corrina zu Sayn-Wittgenstein who is ‘advisor’ to Princess Charlene of Monaco. They really need to rethink that.

  3. Kiera says:

    Anyone else feel like we should send Felipe and Letizia a sympathy card and some booze cause gahhd. I know, I know they’re rich etc, but this must suck so much. Especially cause it really seems like they have nothing to do with it. Maybe we can set them up Harry and Meghan and they can sit around and bitch about shady relatives.

  4. Desdemona says:

    I think that most of the problems between Letizia and Felipe’s mother have to do with financial scandals and her pretending her husband, Juan Carlos didn’t have affairs.
    She’s thinking about the future of her two daughters and trying to make sure the monarchu doesn’t end. Good for her.

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      And also because Sofia is resentful that she is no longer Queen and that she is consistently undermining Letti as Queen at every opportunity she can get, public or otherwise.

      There is also the fact that Sofia is also publicly support of her favourite daughter, Cristina, and her husband who has been convicted of stealing money from a charity. She does NOT care how that affects her sons reign – she is a bitter old hag who as I say is resentful she is no longer Queen of Spain.

      • notasugarhere says:

        This. She stayed with JC, married him, because she wanted the position of Queen. How’s that working out for her, in five decades worth of misery and a cheating husband?

        She needs to be shuffled off with JC for her behavior around Cristina, and her public games against Letizia. Her bitching was the reason Letizia wasn’t allowed to do any international work for over a decade, because Sofia wanted any international attention for herself.

      • Thirtynine says:

        So true. Yet Felipe and Letizia seem to act with honour and serve to the best of their ability. I have a lot of respect for them. I also admire the way in which they have brought up their daughters- Leonor’s public speeches at her age are impressive. Not Spanish- but to an observer from far away there’s a lot to like.

    • MissMarierose says:

      Yeah, my guess is that there’s tension between Letizia and the rest of Felipe’s family because she makes sure that her husband and daughters don’t end up like the rest of that corrupt family.

  5. Erinn says:

    I mean, it does suck for Felipe. From the little I’ve learned about him, he seems to have had his head on right in terms of preparing to be king. Time in the military as well as multiple degrees which IS nice to see, because we all know not all royal offspring seem to take it half that seriously. And he really did inherit a mess – so obviously he’s put a lot of work in and does seem to care.

  6. 10KTurtle says:

    Not sure if or how it might be related, but Princess Benedikte of Denmark is married into the Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg family, and her sister (Queen Anne Marie Of Greece and the Hellenes) is married to Juan Carlos’s brother-in-law. It’s interesting, I think…

  7. ArtHistorian says:

    The Spanish royals (excluding Philipe and Letizia) really are idiots. The Spanish monarchy was already vulnerable since it is a restored monarchy, a recently restored one, which makes it extra vulnerable because the people remember living without a monarchy. The fact that its former monarch and on of his children entered into illegal activities is just reckless if they wanted the monarchy to survive. I honestly think that this investigation sounds the death knell to the monarchy in Spain.

    • Ana says:

      As always, powerful people don’t care for the people but for their own private interests.

    • notasugarhere says:

      ArtHistorian, what’s your opinion on Joachim’s new job? It seems odd to have them move full-time to Paris indefinitely, instead of the one year we were told at the beginning.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        I haven’t kept up with Joachim – didn’t know he has a new job.

        I’m fine with him pursuing what he wants to do but I really need him to not receive public money anymore. He’s the richest member of the DRF and if he’s going to live abroad and not represent the Crown, then he shouldn’t get public money. Indeed, he shouldn’t have received public money at all! It has always been just the monarch and the heir who got apanage. However, when Joachim wed Alexandre in the late 1990s, Parliament for some reason decided to give him a yearly apanage.

        He should refuse this apanage or the government should yank it. I’d prefer the first since it would be more gracious and less controversial. I also think that the government should stop paing Count Ingolf 1 million Dkr a year because he didn’t become king. That has gone on for way too long.

      • notasugarhere says:

        ArtHistorian, I wonder if this is the first step in him getting off the taxpayers money permanently? It is a job as military attache in Paris. I could see the four of them (Joachim, Marie, two younger children) moving to Paris full-time and not moving back. He could sell that huge house in Copenhagen and buy something in Paris for them. If he inherits Henri’s house at Cayx, which hasn’t been decided yet, that would increase the chances of them never moving back to Denmark.

        Do you think the apanage for Joachim was because of Alexandra’s popularity?

      • ArtHistorian says:

        He’s finally doing what he wants to do. Joachim was kinda trapped into the whole farming business when the couple who owned Shackenborg willed the estate to the DRF, Joachim specifically when he was 11 years old. He studied agriculture and made a go of it – but the estate wasn’t really big enough to generate a profit (+ he had to invest a lot in new machinery). He had his life mapped out for him since he was 11 and he made a genuine go at it. I have no problem with him selling the estate an getting wealthy – though the press made a big to do about it. However, I suspect that has a lot to do with the fact that he isn’t that popular. I just want him off the public money since it should just be the monarch and the heir.

        I honestly don’t know why Joachim was given an apanage when he married Alexandra but I wouldn’t be surprised if her popularity had something to do with it (or maybe Queen Ingrid was involved with that decision – since it is strongly suspected that she had some influence as to why the Law of Succession was added onto the Referendum of Constitutional Change in 1953, which made Margrethe the heir instead of Knud and his descendants, that’s why Ingolf still gets public money – he didn’t become king).

        I do remember when Joachim and Alex wed. The announcement came as a bombshell. Since their courtship has taken place in Hong Kong both the public and the press knew nothing. She was just so charming and made such a big effort to understand Denmark (learning Danish REALLY fast). Plus, it was the first royal wedding in a long time – so there was a lot of excitement. I do think the decision to give him an apanage had something to do with that in the sense that there was a lot of interest in and goodwill for Alex – and that there was the feeling that people were interested in her representing the DRF.

  8. notasugarhere says:

    Mention in one paper than J-C is looking to scurry off to a non-extradition country.