By James Bryce
SPAIN’S top judge has resigned over allegations he spent €36,000 of taxpayers’ money on weekend trips to Marbella.
Chief justice Carlos Divar insisted he was ‘not aware that he had done anything wrong’ and that he was the victim of a ‘cruel and disproportionate campaign’.
But the 70-year-old head of the Supreme Court told the 20 members of the General Council of the Judiciary – of which he was also president – that he held no grudges.
The resignation is the first time in the history of the Spanish judiciary, celebrating its bicentennial this week, that a chief justice has been forced to step down.
King Juan Carlos avoided the controversy earlier this week by pulling out of a ceremony to mark the bicentenary.
Divar is alleged to have charged 32 weekend trips to Marbella to the judiciary, spending four days at a time in Puerto Banus between September 2010 and November 2011.
Among the costs alleged to have been incurred on the trips were luxury restaurants and a seven-strong team of bodyguards.