Spanish Princess Has to Stand Trial for Tax Fraud


Royalty ain’t what it used to be: Spain’s Princess Cristina—the current king’s sister—will have to stand trial for tax fraud. Unfortunately, shouting “unhand me, PEASANTS” and name-checking the divine right of kings no longer constitutes a get-out-of-jail-free card.

The charges come after a years-long investigation into alleged corruption at her husband Iñaki Urdangarin’s nonprofit, Institute Noos. According to the Wall Street Journal:

Judge José Castro upheld a judicial panel’s recommendation last month that the princess; her husband, Iñaki Urdangarin; and 15 others be charged in a four-year-old corruption case that has eroded the popularity of monarchy… Judge Castro said he found evidence that the princess and her husband had funded a lavish lifestyle by diverting millions of euros in public funds destined for Instituto Nóos, Mr. Urdangarin’s not-for-profit sports consultancy, into the couple’s real estate and asset-management firm Aizoon. The princess was a board member of Nóos.

I’m no expert, but perhaps “not-for-profit sports consultancy” was their first clue.

The princess and everybody else gets their day in court sometime next year. (Her husband faces a heap more charges, including embezzlement of public funds and money laundering; the pair say they’re not guilty.) Having a member on trial is a first for this royal family, and obviously it’s not doing her brother the king any favors in the preserving-the-crown department. Maybe the Spanish monarchy can borrow princes George and Harry for a little crisis PR work?

Image via Getty.

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