The Pujol case (II): the offspring of the former Catalan prime minister and their relationships to the entangled family case

The “Pujol case” - that’s what they’re calling the court proceedings against the former Catalan president, who is accused of using tax havens to squirrel away money he had received from an undeclared inheritance from his father Florenci Pujol. Initially, this was estimated at five to eight million euros. However, the case has not yet been closed and many other members of his family are now involved. His wife and seven children have also been accused of crimes, including bribery, tax fraud, money-laundering, perverting the course of justice, embezzlement and perjury.In the last edition of Amigos, we reported on the case of Jordi Pujol and his wife Marta Ferrusola. In this edition, we will examine the links to each of the seven Pujol children (Jordi, Marta, Josep, Pere, Oriol, Mireia and Oleguer) in the complex Pujol case and their importance.

Jordi Pujol Ferrusola (Barcelona 1958)

The business brain of the family. Since February 2014, he has, together with his partner Mercè Gironès, been accused of money laundering and crimes against the public finances. Between 2004 and 2012, he is thought to have made 118 bank transfers to the value of € 32.4 million. This was all revealed thanks to allegations made by his former life partner María Victoria Álvarez, who stated that he travelled to Andorra “on several occasions with bags of money”. On 28 April this year, the judge sent him to gaol provisionally on suspicion of illicit capital flight.The eldest of the Pujol clan had been suspected for some time of having committed fraud on a number of occasions. Through several companies, he had invoiced the Generalitat de Catalunya for € 11 million for supposed consulting services in the sphere of urban planning and public works.He made use of a number of international relations for money laundering outside Spain. He codename in the operation was “Diplomatic”.He is also accused of having made false statements regarding loans and donations and in respect of the separation of assets, making false acknowledgement of debt agreements, and of tax evasion by means of financial transactions. And much more.

Marta Pujol Ferrusola (Barcelona 1959)

She is suspected of having been employed irregularly as an architect in the municipality of Sant Vicenç de Montalt between 1966 and 2012, with just 9 working hours per week and a salary of € 2,264.17. Up to 4 departments of the Generalitat de Catalunya gave her commissions totalling € 120 million in value. Before the accounts in Andorra were blocked, she withdrew € 22,000 in cash.

Josep Pujol Ferrusola (Barcelona 1963)

He has confirmed that he has money in tax havens and that he has regularised € 2 million in a tax amnesty. He is the founder and consultant of EuroPraxis Consulting Holding, which executed a number of orders for the Generalitat worth some € 60 million. He is also accused of laundering € 900,000 by means of a fraudulent loan in Andorra through a company called Firma Cat Helicopters, which received various orders from Servei Català de Trànsit.His codename for the operatives in Andorra and Switzerland was “Rocabily” or “Rucabily”.

Pere Pujol Ferrusola (Barcelona 1965)

He is an agricultural engineer and worked for Entorn, a firm that profited from a number of commissions from the Generalitat de Catalunya. He is also accused of money laundering in Andorra with operations in euros, dollars and Japanese yen, together with his mother and sisters Marta and Mireia, who also made use of accounts of the BPA (Banca Privada Andorrana).

Oriol Pujol Ferrusola (Barcelona 1966)

He was a Catalan politician and held a various positions in the presidential section of the Generalitat de Catalunya, where he was most recently in charge of relations between the Generalitat and the parliament. Later, he was deputy for Barcelona after the elections of 2003 and 2006 and spokesman for the CiU in the parliament, and was also Secretary General of Convergència Democràtica de Catalunya.In July 2012, a report by the Agència Tributaria came into the hands of the media, following which he was referred to as an “important participant” in the activities of a company that intended to fabricate invitations to tender for concessions for MOT stations in Catalonia. The Generalitat had fabricated invoices with which € 72,000 was to be paid to Josep Tous. Tous was chosen by Oriol Pujol to fabricate the last invitation to tender for the MOT organisation, which was organised by the then “tripartit”, and to prepare a new plan.In March 2013, he appeared before the Tribunal Superior de Justícia de Catalunya, charged with an offence of granting an advantage. According to that body, “Pujol coordinated and directed” the other defendants in the case “from a political perspective” Many of them were even his personal friends. The report stated that on 14 July 2014 he gave up his seat in the Parlament de Catalunya and also his position as Secretary General of the party. Both he and his spouse Ana Vidal remain accused of anomalies in transfers of money from the family’s assets to Andorra, as well as of granting advantages and receiving illegal provisions.

Mireia Pujol Ferrusola (Barcelona 1971)

The youngest daughter of the family was the only person that did not hold her brother Jordi responsible for management of the assets in Andorra. According to her, the management of her 62 million pesetas (€ 332,000) was in the hands of Andbank and later of the Banca Privada d’Andorra (BPA). Of the € 1.4 million that she had thanks to transfers from her brother, in over 20 years she withdrew only € 157,000 to pay for a physiotherapy machine for her clinic. According to legal sources, she told her brother from 2000 that he should not pay her any more.Her assets reached a total of € 1.7 million, but in 2014 she regularised only € 1.1 million. The difference resulted from the purchase of the machine and the management by the BPA. She has admitted to having, together with her sister Marta, established a foundation in Panama to squirrel away the funds from Andorra. She also confirmed that her BPA managers gave her advice on how to avoid paying tax in Andorra.

Oleguer Pujol Ferrusola (Barcelona 1972)

After having studied at the Thunderbird School of Management (1994-1995) in Arizona (USA), he moved to London, where he worked in the department for mergers and takeovers of Morgan Stanley. The journalist Antonio Fernández wrote the following in his book “Pujol i Puig”: “In reality he was always the most active, but he knew how to move in the twilight world”. Thus in his case one finds hidden companies, tax havens, provisions, dozens of millions of euros, the tax amnesty ...In 2001, he founded Drago Capital together with another young entrepreneur, Luis Iglesias. This is the source of funds for all of Oleguer Pujol’s companies. He is also the owner and landlord of the building in which the Prisa communications groups has its headquarters.The youngest member of the Pujol family invested part of the family assets hidden in Andorra in a variety of real estate projects in Panama, which were controlled by offshore companies based in the Bahamas. These operations were identified by the Audiencia Nacional.

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