“I never received a bonus”

Publication: Wednesday March 24, 2021 4:34 PM

“I never received a bonus.” This is how José María Aznar denied on Wednesday having received irregular payments during the trial by Box B of the Popular Party, of which he denied the existence.

“I have never received a salary supplement. All the amounts I received were received by wire transfer and all were also declared absolutely in my income tax returns and in my personal income tax returns,” said the former president of the government, who appeared by telematics before the National Court from his home, with a mask.

Asked about the parallel accounting of the PP, the existence of which was ruled by the Supreme Court accredited in its decision on the Gürtel plot, Aznar claimed not to know of its existence, despite the fact that the former party treasurer, Luis Bárcenas, pointed the finger at him as a connoisseur of this irregular financing.

“I have not known any B accounts within the People’s Party. I have not known any parallel accounts. I have not known more accounts than the official PP accounts which were quickly sent to the Court of Auditors” , did he declare.

Aznar, who was in charge of the executive between 1996 and 2004, denied at any time having received “a bonus for the presidency of the government or any other amount” than what was due to him as such. In this sense, he stressed that during his tenure as president, he even voluntarily paid taxes for the use of the Moncloa as a house.

“I don’t know what the others did, I don’t care, I also don’t know what my successors did, and I’m not interested. I know what I did, with all its consequences, “said the former leader of the PP.

During his statement, Aznar insisted on questioning lawyers about his clients’ popular accusations, featured in a small clash with lawyer José Mariano Benítez de Lugo, whom he remembered as a PSOE lawyer, to whom he urged him not to make him “tab”. Similar episodes occurred with lawyers Virgilio Latorre and Gonzalo Boye: the first, Aznar questioned his socialist clients, and the second recalled that he represented former president Carles Puigdemont, when the judge l ‘reprimanded.

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