Spanish ex-king juan carlos exiled at 82 amid scandal over alleged bribes and judicial investigation.
He leaves the zarzuela palace in madrid and also his home country and moves abroad, the "rey emerito", the emeritus king, informs his son and successor felipe VI. In a letter published on monday by the royal family in madrid with.
The daily newspaper "el mundo", which is usually very well informed on the subject of the monarchy, asserted that the decision was taken primarily by felipe. The royal family "forced" juan carlos to leave spain, the paper says. The affair had greatly damaged the image of felipe and the spanish monarchy. Calls for the abolition of the monarchy had recently become louder and louder.
With his decision, he wants to help facilitate the execution of his son’s work as head of state, "given the public repercussions that certain past events are currently causing," writes juan carlos, in a clear allusion to the judicial investigations currently underway against him not only in spain but also in switzerland.
"It is a decision i make with deep feelings but with rough calm," juan carlos adds in his letter. Where he will move has not been communicated for the time being.
In the scandal surrounding alleged bribes paid by a spanish consortium during the construction of a high-speed rail line in saudi arabia, the supreme court in madrid on 8. June investigation launched against juan carlos.
The investigations are aimed at "delimiting or excluding the criminal relevance of the acts" that took place after the abdication of juan carlos as king in june 2014, the supreme court prosecutor’s office announced at the time.
The authorities responsible for corruption and economic crime have been investigating the so-called "wusten train affair" since 2018. In 2008, juan carlos allegedly took bribes of 100 million U.S. Dollars from saudi arabia.
For the four decades that he was king and head of state of spain (from 22. November 1975 to 14. June 2014) enjoys juan carlos immunity. After abdicating the throne in favor of his son, he still has special rights, but he can be put in the dock by the supreme court. Although the alleged bribe payment was made in 2008, juan carlos could be accused of money laundering in connection with the scandal, among other things, in the period after 2014.
The high-speed line between mecca and medina built by several spanish companies was inaugurated in october 2018. The "al haramain" express train takes about two hours to cover the 450 kilometers. For passengers, including millions of pilgrims, the journey time has been shortened by over 50 percent.