A Spanish court has given Iñaki Urdangarin who is brother-in-law for King Felipe five days to report to the authorities to be jailed. The 50-year-old husband of Princess Christina lost an appeal against a fraud conviction, BBC reported.
Mr Urdangarin, an Olympic handball player, was sentenced to five years and ten months in prison after being found guilty by a court in Mallorca last year of tax evasion and fraud. Princess Christina’s husband lives in Switzerland with his royal wife who is the sister of King Felipe. According to Mallorca court, Iñaki Urdangarin’s sentence was reduced this week from six years and three months.
For Princess Christina, it was the most annoying surprise that coincided with her 53rd birthday.
On Tuesday, street protesters in Palma were shouting “thief” while King Felipe’s brother-in-law was coming to the Supreme Court’s building. The claims that Urdangarin had syphoned off millions of euros via his not-for-profit Nóos Institute sports foundation on the island of Mallorca, was checked thoroughly during the investigation.
While King Felipe’s sister Christina was absolved of any guilt in the corruption trial, she had been on the board of the Nóos Institute and was given a fine for unwittingly benefiting from illegal gains. In fact, the financial reputation of Iñaki Urdangarin is not so clear. The ex-athlete still has the right to seek a royal pardon, however, King Felipe VI has tried to distance himself from the case, which overshadowed the final years of his father Juan Carlos, who abdicated in 2014.
Another royal crisis caused by Urdangarin proved that King Felipe wasn’t too wrong when he stripped a royal couple of their titles of Duke and Duchess of Palma de Mallorca when he came to power. The Spanish monarch also barred Princess Christina and her husband from appearing at official events from 2011.