SHAFAQNA – Lawyers representing Spanish Princess Cristina, the Duchess of Palma de Mallorca, have appealed against a judge’s decision to try her on charges of tax fraud.
Princess Cristina, 49, is facing prosecution as part of a four-year investigation of her husband, Inaki Urdangarin, who is accused of money laundering and fraud.
On December 22, Spanish Judge Jose Castro said Christina, the sister of Spain’s King Felipe VI, faces two counts of acting as an accessory to tax fraud over alleged links to business dealings by her husband.
Christina’s husband and his former business partner, Diego Torres, are accused of embezzling millions of euros in public funds through a non-profit institute.
Urdangarin, the Duke of Palma de Mallorca, allegedly diverted around six million euros (USD 8.1 million) of public funds through the institute, which was in his charge from 2004 to 2006.
The princess is the first Spanish royal to face prosecution since the monarchy was restored in 1975.
The trial, if held, is expected to take place toward the end of the year.
Cristina, who was allegedly fully aware of her husband’s criminal actions but did nothing to notify the authorities, has denied all charges related to the case. Urdangarin has also denied any wrongdoing.
Spain’s high court on the island of Mallorca in November 2014 dropped money-laundering charges against Christina.
The Spanish public’s confidence in the monarchy has been recently in decline following a series of financial scandals over the last few years, including Princess Cristina’s case.
Princess Cristina’s father, Juan Carlos, abdicated in June 2014 after a series of scandals involving the royal family.
According to a survey conducted in June 2014, the majority of Spain’s population is in favor of a referendum on the future of the monarchy in their country.
Spain has been the scene of popular protests urging the abolition of the monarchy in the country.