An Andorran judge has notified the former Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, and his former Interior Minister, Jorge Fernández Díaz, that they are being investigated as a result of a lawsuit for alleged pressure on the Banca Privada d’Andorra (BPA) to obtain information from politicians Catalans during the process.
The investigation derives from a complaint, admitted for processing in 2020, presented by the Institut de Drets Humans d’Andorra, Drets and the former president of BPA, Higini Cierco, for the so-called Operation Catalonia and includes the former Secretary of State for the Interior Francisco Martínez and the former director of the Police Ignacio Cosidó, as reported by the complainant entities.
The Batlle of investigation number 2 of Andorra, Stéphanie Garcia Garcia, has now issued rogatory commissions to notify the complaint to the accused and gives them fifteen days to appoint legal representation, warning them that if they do not do so, one will be appointed ex officio, they have explained the Institut and Drets in a statement. The judge has also agreed to once again send rogatory commissions to the former operational deputy director (DAO) of the National Police Eugenio Pino and former chief inspector Bonifacio Diez, who were already summoned but did not appear.
The lawsuit, which was initially directed against members of the so-called “patriotic police”, was later expanded as a result of the incorporation of new complainants, including the Pujol family. The complaint, filed for the crimes of coercion, threats, extortion, blackmail and false documents, accuses Rajoy and Fernández Díaz of sending members of the police to pressure those responsible for the BPA to obtain information on the bank accounts of Catalan politicians in the Principality , among them the former president Artur Mas, the ERC leader Oriol Junqueras or the Pujol family.
The complaint maintains that the Spanish government would have extorted those responsible for BPA, threatening to force the closure of the entity and its Spanish subsidiary Banco Madrid (both already closed) if they did not provide the required information. According to the complainants, the Rajoy government allegedly sent false information about BPA to the United States financial crime control office, while “intimidating” the Andorran government and its ministers on an official visit to the Principality in January 2015, to precipitate the closure of the entity.
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