The PP fails in its attempt to discredit the main investigator of the ‘Gürtel case’ | Spain

Manuel Morocho, chief inspector of the National Police, in Congress in March of this year.
Manuel Morocho, chief inspector of the National Police, in Congress in March of this year.JUAN CARLOS HIDALGO (EFE)

The PP has received another setback in its repeated attempt to discredit Manuel Morocho, chief inspector of the Police and main investigator of the Gürtel case. Judge Santiago Pedraz has recently stopped the latest claims of the party in the investigations about box b that are still open in the National Court. Pablo Casado’s formation had asked to scrutinize one of the agent’s reports in order to “materialize” the “suppression” of those fragments that had no relation to the case, but the magistrate has rejected it. This decision comes after the party already attacked Morocho in a previous letter on the same matter, in which he even requested that he be warned for “malpractice” and for his “reprehensible behavior.”

For years, the popular ones have maintained an intense campaign against the chief inspector, who for more than a decade has led the group of the Economic and Fiscal Crime Unit (UDEF) of the Police in charge of the investigations into Francisco Correa’s corrupt network that nested in the party. Morocho signed most of the reports that have brought the PP to the bench and, recently, also detailed the pressure he received to try to stop his inquiries.

Among the documents that have the agent’s signature is one dated July 20, which has greatly irritated the headquarters of Genoa 13. This report shows the links between Gürtel and Kitchen: it concludes that the para-police operation to spy on the ex-treasurer Luis Bárcenas not only had as a “strategic objective” to snatch compromising papers that he kept from senior PP officials before the UDEF or the National High Court took over them within the framework of the Gürtel case, but also asserts that the plot was conceived within the formation itself, the Ministry of the Interior and the leadership of the Police.

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Faced with such assertions, the PP submitted a letter asking Pedraz to remove Morocho’s analysis from the box b instruction. In a very harsh tone, the party considered that the policeman exceeded his functions and included “subjective evaluations” guided by an “incriminating bias” that “desperately looked for indicative elements” against the popular ones. However, already in October, the judge ruled out expelling the investigation report, “without prejudice” to the fact that those appraisals that had nothing to do with “may be considered excluded (without the need for their expulsion).”

Despite this, the PP considered the decision insufficient. The popular ones immediately presented an appeal to insist that the instructor should explain “how he was going to materialize” that measure or, failing that, “materialize” it directly with the “suppression” of the “subjective value judgments” of Morocho, which implies scrutinizing the entire report to detail where the police officer allegedly overreached. But, again, Pedraz has dismissed those allegations with the support of the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office.

According to a resolution of November 18, to which EL PAÍS has had access, it makes no sense to adopt that initiative now. The investigating judge argues that he will already consider it when he issues the order of indictment or dismissal of the case, which is pending a final report. It will be the moment in which “he will value everything that has been done” in the investigation, he says.

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The final report of the Treasury

This attack by the PP against Morocho occurs in the last line of investigation of the Gürtel case which remains open in the National Court, focused on the crime of bribery for the alleged donations of businessmen to the party’s box b in exchange for awards. In this part, Morocho has already taken for granted the relationship of the party’s irregular income with the public works concession and, in fact, signed another report this July where he documented millionaire cost overruns in a large part of 23 contracts awarded during José’s second term. María Aznar (2000-2004) to Constructora Hispánica, one of the companies linked to Correa’s corruption scheme.

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Pedraz, who has all these data on the table —including Morocho’s report on the connection between Kitchen and Gürtel— ended the instructional period last July. Now, it is only waiting to receive the final report from the General State Intervention (IGAE) on the alleged irregularities in these works, which will be key when it comes to agreeing whether to send someone to the bench to be tried.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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