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Five convicted in the 'De Miguel' case are not in prison

  • The Provincial High Court of Álava has suspended the sanction of five people for having convictions under two years of age and no record. In the case of Ainhoa Bilbao and Iratxe Gaztelu-Urrutia, the court has taken the decision against the opinion of the Prosecutor’s Office.
De Miguel auziko epaiketan kondenatu nagusienekin batera. Argazkia: Foku / Jaizki Fontaneda

25 May 2023 - 09:50
Last updated: 11:03

Five convicts in the De Miguel case, the largest of the corruption cases ever prosecuted in Euskal Herria, will not be imprisoned by decision of the Territorial Court of Álava. Ainhoa Bilbao, Iratxe Gaztelu-Urrutia, Jon Iñaki Etxaburu, Josu Arruti and Sergio Fernández are the five people who will not go to jail.

The Hearing has paralysed the execution of his sentence by taking into account that the penalties are less than two years old in all cases and that they had no record when they committed the crime. The Court considers that they must fulfil a number of requirements: "to have satisfied the civil responsibilities generated" or not to re-offend while the penalty is suspended.

Against the Public Prosecutor's Office

In the case of Ainhoa Bilbao and Iratxe Gaztelu-Urrutia, the prosecution service is against. Alfredo De Miguel and Koldo Otxandiano, former members of the PNV’s Araba Buru Batzar, head the Bilbao and Gaztelu-Urrutia De Miguel network, and the prosecution asks to imprison like the rest of the prisoners.

The Public Prosecutor’s Office, in the case of Bilbao and Gaztelu-Urrutia, has seen sufficient grounds for having to enter prison

The company Kataia Consulting, through which the convicted persons diverted much of the public money, was in his name, and although during the trial they certified as mere lenders, the jury sentenced them to imprisonment. Among other things, it was demonstrated that the stolen money was manipulated and used for their accounts, as Iker Rioja recalled.

Those sentenced to less than two years ' imprisonment usually do not enter prison, but this measure is not automatic and each case should be examined individually. The Public Prosecutor’s Office, in the case of Bilbao and Gaztelu-Urrutia, has seen enough reasons for having to go into prison.

The Bilbao lawyer had previously made requests for non-payment of financial fine and non-entry into prison, using various options he had legally. The Hearing has accepted this request not to enter prison, both to her and to Gaztelu-Urrutia. In addition, in the case of both of them it has taken into account that they are in charge of minors.

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