THE disgraced former leader of Spain’s miners’ union has been forced to explain the origins of a €1.4 million secret fortune hidden overseas.
Iconic Socialist Jose Angel Fernandez Villa – previously regional deputy and senator of PSOE Asturias – has explained to the Hacienda that the fortune was an inheritance from his mother, Ludivine Villa.
His mother – who ran a bar for decades in the town of Tuilla, in Asturias – died in January 2011, aged 91, and supposedly left the fortune to Villa, the eldest of five siblings.
The explanation comes as part of an ongoing anti-corruption investigation into the origins of the fortune, after Villa reported the funds as part of a tax amnesty announced by the government in March 2012.
The 71-year-old politician – who is currently at the Central University Hospital in Asturias with an infection – has been expelled from both the miners’ union and the PSOE.
The parliament of Asturias has also agreed to request the removal of Villa as their representative within the state mining company Hunosa.
With elections approaching next year, the PSOE hopes to reassure its voters that it is an ‘honest and honourable’ party.