Spain freezes properties of late Atletico Madrid boss

05 April 2013 07:16

A Spanish judge has frozen more than 100 properties left by the late Atletico Madrid boss Jesus Gil y Gil to his children so as to ensure the repayment of millions that went missing when he was mayor of Marbella, a city hall spokesman said Friday.

As heirs of the former football boss and Marbella mayor, who died in 2004, the four children were ordered by a court in 2011 to compensate the city for illicit transfers of public money by their father between 1994 and 1999.

The Court of Audit imposed a preventative embargo on the properties, a Marbella city hall spokesman told AFP, confirming a story published in the local daily Diario Sur.

The paper, which had access to a court ruling dated February 15, said the measure concerned 118 properties belonging to companies of the four children of Gil, including buildings in Marbella and Madrid and two farms of 300 and 600 hectares (740 and 1,480 acres).

The asset freeze was aimed at ensuring the children complied with a sentence obliging the former mayor's heirs to return 66 million euros ($86 million) to Marbella city hall, plus interest estimated at more than 40 million euros, it said.

Outspoken, friendly, and with a fat gold chain around his neck, Gil was one of the most controversial and high profile figures of Spain in the 1990s.

He once presented a television programme in which he commented on the news from a jacuzzi, surrounded by women in swimming costumes.

Gil was president of Atletico Madrid from 1987 to 2003 and he ran Marbella, a southern Spanish Mediterranean resort renowned for corruption scandals, from 1991 to 2002.

Gil was imprisoned three times: firstly in 1969 for the collapse of a building he put up in which more than 50 people were killed; secondly in 1999 for siphoning 450 million pesetas (2.7 million euros) from Marbella to Atletico Madrid; and thirdly in 2002 during hearings into a Marbella city hall embezzlement scandal.

Source: AFP