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Spain's 'corruption king' turns violent in prison

Alex Dunham · 16 Apr 2014, 11:02

Published: 16 Apr 2014 11:02 GMT+02:00

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Luis Bárcenas has been behind bars since June 27th 2013.

He is currently being investigated for multi-million euro tax fraud.

The former PP moneyman is also under investigation for allegedly receiving sizeable illegal payments in the so-called Gürtel case.

Bárcenas, who's seen his €48 million ($63 million) in Swiss bank accounts blocked by a judge, is now turning aggressive as the prospect of spending many years behind bars dawns on him.

On January 8th, he confronted the driver of the van that was about to take him and other inmates to a local Madrid hospital for medical check-ups they had requested.

“I’m not a criminal,” he shouted as he refused to be handcuffed behind his back, a requirement for prisoners travelling in Spain.

He reluctantly got in the van and “began banging and shouting out complaints”, a police report stated.

Civil Guard officers told the driver to stop the vehicle even before it had left the precinct, but rather than apologize for his actions, Bárcenas told them he wanted to return to his cell and sue the officers that had handcuffed him.

“(He) put his wrists together and lifted them right up to my face in a threatening way, shouting ‘this injury I have is the Civil Guard’s fault, a doctor has to see it because in a few minutes you won’t be able to see,” one of the officers present recalls.

The doctor checked Bárcenas soon after, pointing to a “reddening of the wrists in line with wearing handcuffs, which won’t require further treatment”.

The discredited former treasurer continued to behave childishly once in his cell, pushing one of the Civil Guards on the shoulder, calling them “show-offs” and complaining about his superficial injuries, Spanish daily 20minutos reported on Wednesday.

Story continues below…

His misconduct has cost him 140 days without prison courtyard time, a punishment which may weigh heavily on a man who’s started to crack under the prospect of spending many more years behind bars as further details emerge about his secret party slush funds.

READ ON: Spain's ruling party had secret slush fund in every region - judge

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Alex Dunham (alex.dunham@thelocal.com)

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