High Court opens inquiry into Bárcenas’ 560,000-euro painting sale

New probe focuses on scheme to allegedly pass off undeclared funds as proceeds from art dealings

Spain’s High Court announced on Monday that it is opening an investigation into former Popular Party treasurer Luis Bárcenas and his wife in connection with paintings they allegedly used to explain 560,000 euros in proceeds.

The new inquiry is just the latest of the legal entanglements Bárcenas and his wife Rosalia Iglesias face.

Last week, Argentinean Isabel Mackinlay, a well-known art restorer, testified from her home in Buenos Aires that one of Bárcenas’ front men gave her 1,500 euros in exchange for signing a sales receipt for paintings that were allegedly later used by Iglesias’ lawyers to justify the 560,000 euros to tax auditors.

High Court Judge Pablo Ruz said in his ruling that Bárcenas and his wife may have committed “procedural fraud” by submitting false information to the AEAT tax agency.


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