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The prosecution demands 70 years in prison on Rodrigo Rato for tax evasion, corruption and money laundering

Madrid

Updated: Tuesday, March 23, 2021 3:35 PM

Published on: 23.03.2021 14:40

The prosecution accuses Rodrigo Rato of 11 crimes against the Treasury, as well as a crime of money laundering, a punishable insolvency crime, a crime of bribery in business and a continuing crime of falsification of official and commercial documents.

Thus, he calls for prison sentences of four to six years for each of the 11 offenses against the Public Treasury, six years for the offense of money laundering, four for the offense of punishable insolvency, four others for the offense of corruption. In the enterprises. and, finally, three for the crime of falsifying documents, in addition to the corresponding fines and ancillary penalties and compensation to the tax authorities for the amounts defrauded during each of the financial years indicated. An amount that would reach 70 years in prison.

In its brief, the prosecutor’s office indicates that Rato has kept a hidden heritage of the Spanish Treasury since 1999, through various companies, including the Irish Red Rose Investment, the Panamanian Red Rose Finantial and Wescastle Corporation and the British Vivaway Limited . Using such entities, Rato would have carried out continuous financial investment activities through a multitude of bank accounts opened in the Bahamas, Switzerland, Luxembourg, the United Kingdom, Switzerland and Monaco, among others, in a transaction unknown to the Public Treasury and that would have constituted taxable events from 2005 to 2015.

The prosecutor’s indictment describes the particularly relevant collaboration that Santiago Alarcó Canosa, Rato’s ex-brother-in-law, and tax adviser Domingo Plazas Ruiz had in such operations, the former manager of his accounts at abroad and managing corporate structures serving the interests of RATO. and the second manager of the Spanish company Kradonara, a subsidiary of Vivaway Limited and organizing the repatriation of part of the sums laundered through omnibus accounts titled by the Gibraltarian Finsbury trust.

According to the prosecution, documents seized at Rato’s home and at the headquarters of his companies in Madrid, revealed that the former minister had also titled accounts in the United States and Switzerland unknown to the Spanish Treasury, which operated through accounts in low-tax jurisdictions such as the Isle of Man, Kuwait and Curacao who allegedly used financial structures to effect clandestine cross-border movements of money through opaque trusts and corporations.

Up to eight money laundering mechanisms

All the amounts hidden from the Treasury were also the subject of money laundering mechanisms by the defendant, describing up to eight money laundering mechanisms in the letter from the prosecution, including among them the use of the so-called “Lombard loan” which enabled him to obtain lines of credit. Very flexible financing with the guarantee of its large portfolio of securities, the own investments of the Rato companies in the German company Bagerpleta Gmbh, the millionaire capital increases in Vivaway itself and in its subsidiary Kradonara SL and even the declarations made to the Treasury clean up the illicit origin of goods which the accused attempted to reintegrate into lawful commercial activity.

Regarding the amnesty that Rato accepted in 2012, the prosecutor’s brief specifies that “far from having regularized neither administratively nor, even less, criminally … he in fact used the DTE as a means of money laundering or cleaning up illicit charges defrauded for years because of his foreign inheritance “.

More than 15 million euros in unjustified assets

The analysis of the audited documentation made it possible to identify unjustified increases in equity capital between 2005 and 2015 for a total amount of 15,633,056.87 euros, in addition to income from movable capital abroad not declared to the Treasury.

In view of this documentation, and according to the report of July 7, 2020 drafted by the AEAT Unit attached to the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office, amounts of 7,470,163.96 euros were defrauded during the aforementioned years.

To this amount must be added the amounts coming from the taxation of the professional services of the accused through their companies, taking advantage of the negative tax bases that they dragged, as is the case of the services provided to Telefónica or the holding conferences, after returning to Spain after leading the International Monetary Fund.

The total of the allegedly defrauded quotas for which Rodrigo Rato is accused amounts to a total of 8,586,121.67 euros.

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