The Criminal Chamber of the National Court has ordered the interrogation of the former secretary general of the PP María Dolores de Cospedal in the case of the espionage of Javier Gómez de Liaño during his time as Luis Bárcenas' lawyer.

In one of the multiple branches of the Villarejo case - this is separate piece number 36 - Judge Manuel García-Castellón investigates, the lawyer of the former treasurer had asked to summon Cospedal to clarify what he knew about this alleged espionage. The proposal was to summon her as a witness, although with the caveat that her situation could be changed to that under investigation in the light of her answers, which could incriminate her.

The Chamber summarizes the object of the ongoing investigation as follows: "An alleged commission by persons linked to the Popular Party of services aimed at obtaining information relating to Luis Bárcenas, accused in a criminal proceeding, and his defense lawyer in that proceeding, Mr. Gómez de Liaño, which could be used to pressure both of them and prevent them from being able to disseminate compromising data for that party."

The basis of the separate piece is a telephone conversation between three defendants in which the commission to put pressure on Liaño is mentioned. The existence of the operation, similar to that of the Kitchen case, would also be supported by the notes seized from retired police commissioner José Manuel Villarejo.

The Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office had opposed Cospedal's summons, but the court that reviews the judge's decisions has agreed with Gómez de Liaño in the face of the judge's thesis that Cospedal would only be a reference witness in the matter.

"The Chamber cannot share the investigator's criterion on the status of mere reference witnesses of persons whose testimony has been refused," the court explains. "The fact that they did not intervene in the recorded conversations does not place them in such a position if, as indicated by the participants and reflected in the notes, they were in meetings, situations or other circumstances that allowed them to have direct knowledge of the facts under investigation in whole or in part, in which case [...] could provide relevant information about the facts, which makes the denied proceedings useful and necessary," the magistrates add.

Those investigated in this separate piece are the lawyer José Luis Moreno Cela; a client, Mónica Gil Manzano; and businessman Juan Ramón Díaz Moro. In addition to Cospedal, the Chamber ordered the investigating judge to take statements from three other persons included in Gómez de Liaño's request for proceedings. They are Commissioner Villarejo and two lawyers from his entourage, José Aliste Martín and Óscar Jiménez de la Rubia.

  • José Manuel Villarejo
  • PP
  • Luis Barcenas
  • María Dolores de Cospedal
  • Bárcenas Case