Gürtel corruption trial sentences: Between nine and 13 years in jail for Valencia suspects

Businessman Francisco Correa ran the corrupt business network

A NATIONWIDE corruption trial involving top-flight PP politicians and business tycoons is coming to an end, with the hearing focusing on the former Valencia regional government culminating in a series of long prison sentences.

Ex-minister for tourism in Valencia, Milagrosa Martínez, has been jailed for nine years for her role in the Gürtel scam, and its ringleader Francisco Correa for 13 years.

Correa’s right-hand men Pablo Crespo and Álvaro Pérez, known as ‘El Bigotes’, have been sentenced to 13 and 12 years respectively.

The case in Valencia involved alleged bribes in exchange for lucrative public works contracts, inflating estimates and final costs to obtain more public funds than needed and split the difference, often invoicing twice or for non-existent costs.

They included the contract for Valencia’s regional stand at the international FITUR tourism fair in Madrid between 2005 and 2009.

Former regional minister Angélica Such and administration technician Juan Bover have been acquitted.

In total, the Gürtel case covers seven ‘branches’ which have been under investigation for over six years.

The Valencia case finally went to trial in April 2016, and its verdict has just been passed 10 months later.

Published Think Spain11 February 2017

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