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POLITICAL CORRUPTION

Gürtel ring paid for sound system at Aznar daughter’s wedding

Court records show alleged graft network spent 34,892 euros at event

Receipts recently obtained by EL PAÍS show that another of the main suspects in the Gürtel corruption ring paid for the sound system that was used during the 2002 wedding of the daughter of former Prime Minister José María Aznar.

Álvaro Pérez, who was commonly referred to by his nickname "whiskers" because of his thick moustache, is the second of the Gürtel suspects whose name appears as contributing to pay for Ana Aznar's wedding to Alejandro Agag.

Court records obtained by EL PAÍS last month show that Francisco Correa — the alleged leader of the kickbacks-for-contracts ring, and who is awaiting trial — paid for the lighting used during the September 5, 2002 ceremony.

In all, people who are now connected to Gürtel contributed 34,892 euros to help pay for sound, lighting and other materials for the reception that followed the church service at El Escorial Monastery.

While sources close to Agag recognize that the prices that were charged were very high, all of the expenses that are detailed in the court case are backed with receipts from different firms, such as Kermessonida and Apogee.

In a statement last month, Agag said that the lighting that Correa paid for was "a wedding gift," and explained that the now-Gürtel chief suspect had not been charged with any crime at the time.

In another related expense, Kermessonida also paid for the wedding performance of Tito Muñoz, a rumba singer who is frequently contracted by the Royal Family for special events. Muñoz performed at Princess Elena's bachelorette party.

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