January 27, 2021

Congress lawyers endorse investigating the opaque cards of the king emeritus

The lawyers of Congress do not see any legal problem in Parliament investigating the use of credit cards opaque to the treasury by the king emeritus. The Board of the Chamber will debate this Wednesday the creation of an investigation commission on the use of opaque bank cards by Juan Carlos de Borbón that elDiario.es revealed. The mandatory report of the legal services of Congress does not reflect any impediment for the Governing Body of the Lower House to transfer the petition, signed by United We Can and six other parliamentary groups, to the Board of Spokespersons. If this second filter passes, its creation will be debated and voted in the Plenary of Congress.

Anti-corruption investigates King Juan Carlos, Queen Sofía and several of their relatives for the use of opaque credit cards

Anti-corruption investigates King Juan Carlos, Queen Sofía and several of their relatives for the use of opaque credit cards

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The meaning of the lawyers’ opinion has been revealed by Pablo Echenique, spokesperson for the United We Can-En Comú-Galicia en Común group, on his Twitter account. “There is no longer an excuse. From now on, the decision is purely political,” says the leader of Podemos in his message, in a reference to the fact that the groups of the Table that usually unite their vote to prevent any parliamentary investigation of the House Real or its members (PSOE, PP and Vox, in this case) will not be able to allude to the opinion of the lawyers to veto the investigations without giving an opinion on the merits of the matter.

The petition of the commission of inquiry, signed United Podemos, ERC, Bildu, Más País, Compromís, CUP and BNG, was already presented by the confederal group in the month of December 2020, but then a defect of form allowed his lock on the table. A few days later, after solving the errors, the groups returned to the load.

It is the first time since 2013, when the economic and judicial scandals that corner Juan Carlos de Borbón began to be revealed, that the Chamber’s lawyers do not oppose an investigation into the Crown. Until now, the legal services of Congress had alluded to the inviolability of the head of state who stipulates the Constitution in its article 56.3. Even when the investigation requests referred to events that occurred after his abdication, since, according to the lawyers, they were events that derived from his role as king. “Inviolability has permanent legal effects“they came to write.

As a result of this “trial and error” system of the different parliamentary groups, which in recent years have registered dozens of requests for investigations and other parliamentary initiatives related to the Crown, the last registered letter has passed the first screening.

However, the commission of inquiry will have to pass three more obstacles. The first, this Wednesday when the Bureau of Congress debates whether or not to send the request to the Board of Spokespersons. In principle, it should pass this filter since the lawyers’ report recommends admitting it for processing, according to Echenique, and this body makes technical decisions, not political ones. However, Unidos Podemos needs at least the PSOE to vote in favor of its processing, since together they make up the majority of the body.

Then the Board of Spokespersons will be the body that first debates the political substance of the petition. And it will be necessary again for the PSOE to add its vote to the groups that want to investigate the alleged irregularities of the father of the current king. In the only time that the Board of Spokespersons has discussed something minimally related to Juan Carlos de Borbón, a commission on the alleged commissions paid for the AVE contract to Mecca. Although the emeritus king was not mentioned, the PSOE joined its vote with PP, Vox and Ciudadanos and voted against.

If, if necessary, a majority of the groups vote in favor in the Board of Spokespersons, the commission of inquiry must pass one last filter: the Plenary of Congress. There would be where the public debate between the different parties would take place and its implementation would be voted definitively.


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