TARIFA’S councillor for Celebrations, Markets and Health, Ana Maria Garcia, has been forced to resign after running up a mobile telephone bill of €20,000 on premium SMS messages.

Pressure had been mounting on the councillor since the two bills first came to light in September.

A visibly upset Garcia told the press that she admitted spending around €2,000 on personal calls, but that she was in the process of contesting the remaining €18,000 through the courts.

“I am not guilty of any crime” she told reporters after being forced to step down. “But there are politicians who have done worse”