Spain’s King Philip VI has decided to deprive his sister Princess Cristina of noble title Duchess of Palma de Mallorca.
The Princess was given the title of her father King Juan Carlos when she married the former Olympic handball player Iñaki Urdangarín 1997. The background to the decision is the husband’s shady transactions that have led to both Cristina and Iñaki Urdangarín being prosecuted. It is the first time that anyone with royal ties is on trial in Spain. Princess Cristina is not officially a member of the royal family but she stands as number six in succession.
he charges against the princess’s husband Iñaki Urdangarín include fraud, tax fraud and embezzling public funds. The Princess is accused of abetting tax evasion, which can provide up to 8 years in prison. The crux of the prosecution is that she has served on the board of the company that was used to misappropriate public funds. She has also been accused of money laundering, but the charge has been discontinued.
Spanish media praises the king for the decision which they consider reasonable, and give him credit for putting his role as King before the role as a brother. There have also been requests that Christina should be deprived of her princess title, but under Spanish law, this is something that she must ask herself.
When King Philip VI took over the kingship from his father King Juan Carlos I on June 19 last year, he stressed that he would work for the monarchy’s dignity. During his first year as king, he has taken many steps to both ensure transparency and limit the costs of the royal family.
It should be added that both the Princess Cristina and Iñaki Urdangarín are denying the charges.