Publication: Friday, November 27, 2020 8:42 a.m.
The Swiss bank Mirabaud & Cie has concealed from its employees the identity of the owner of the millionaire account on which King Emeritus Juan Carlos I received in August 2008 a transfer from Saudi Arabia worth 65 million euros. It was revealed by “El País” from the statement of the main bank official to the Swiss prosecutor in charge of the investigation.
The account was opened in the name of the Lucum Foundation but only six people from the Council of Associates knew who was the beneficiary of the foundation and the signed contract was kept in a safe in the central bank file to which only maximums have access. the partners.
According to the newspaper, the Swiss prosecutor questioned the chairman of the board of the entity, Yves Mirabaud, if there were any clients that the compliance department and the legal department did not know. The answer: “Customers, no, yes a beneficiary, namely the former King of Spain.”
“The only reason it was decided to keep the name of this beneficiary confidential was as follows: it was to avoid too much dispersion among the employees with the intention of maintaining discretion,” explained the Board member. partners.
According to Mirabaud, the account was opened by the company Rhône Gestión via the external manager Arturo Fasana. He met Antoine Boissier and Pierre Mirabaud, other senior officials of the entity. “Mirabaud (Pierre) and Boissier explained that this was a donation from the King of Saudi Arabia to the King of Spain, that the funds would come from the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Finance and that the Ambassador from Saudi Arabia to the United States had confirmed these elements to Mr. Fasana ”, explained Yves Mirabaud in his statement.
“I would say it was a rather rare transaction,” Mirabaud added to the prosecutor’s questions.
The bank canceled the business relationship with Juan Carlos I and the account in 2012, after the elephant hunting scandal in Botswana became public. The owners feared for the reputation of the business in case their identities were revealed.