Madrid mayor cops heat over bodyguard bill

Madrid mayor cops heat over bodyguard bill
Majadahonda mayor Narciso de Foxá continues to maintain four police bodyguards on his books despite criticism. Photo: Chris Brown
The mayor of the Madrid district of Majadahonda is under fire for spending over a quarter of a million euros a year on a troop of personal bodyguards.

The Popular Party (PP) mayor of the district, Narciso de Foxá, employed five private staff in 2011 and 2012 for a total cost of €256,000 a year, reported 20minutos on Wednesday.

This is in an area described as "non-dangerous" by the daily newspaper.

Crime is actually down eight percent in recent times in the district about 20 kilometres from downtown Madrid. 

But de Foxá continues to maintain four police bodyguards on his books.

The fifth member of his security detail is a driver.

This driver, however, also carried a handgun, municipal staff in Majadahonda told 20minutos.

The four police officers were paid over €50,000 a year before tax while the driver collected a salary of €43,680.

In the case of the 'driver', his salary climbed from €33.021,88 a year to €41.920 in the space of 12 months although his duties didn't change.

Staff at Majadahonda town hall refused to explain this salary increase.

A spokesperson for the town hall did provide the following comment, though: "The mayor never travels with four bodyguards."

"They work on shifts on all police officers get the same salary," the spokesperson added.

The ex-mayor of Madrid's Alcalá de Henares, the PP's Bartolomé González was forced to slim down his security from an eight-member term to four people after pressure from the Union, Progress and Democracy Party.

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