‘Forensic study’ claims €15 million wrongly handed to Caja Madrid top dogs

LAST UPDATED: 1 Jan, 2015 @ 15:28
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‘Forensic study’ claims €15 million wrongly handed to Caja Madrid top dogs

SENIOR managers of Caja Madrid allegedly received almost €15 million more in payouts than they should have when Miguel Blesa was president between 2007 and 2010.

A ‘forensic study’ exploring the salaries charged by the bank, created by Price Waterhouse Coopers for Spain’s Orderly Bank Restructuring Fund (FROB), claims that the senior management of Caja Madrid committed ‘a wrong amounting to an estimated €14.8 million’.

An estimated 80% of this excessive payout went to 12 top members of the Caja Madrid board.

The main five of these are: the bank’s president, Miguel Blesa; Matias Amat, the business director; Ildefonso Sanchez Barcoj, the financial director; Enrique de la Torre, the board secretary; and Ricardo Morado Iglesias, the general manager.

The FROB’s dossier details the four different ways that the management team allegedly took the money:

Pay rises of more than 26% – according to the study, the board voted to give themselves substantial pay rises in 2008, that were ‘higher than that due – more than 26% in some cases’.

Variable pay with no documentary support – bonuses were handed out for ‘achieving objectives’ that were not documented. The report estimates the payouts amounted to €1.8 million.

Suspicious pension plans – irregular contributions were made to management pension plans. FROB estimates the contributions amounted to €1.84 million.

Multimillion termination settlements – senior managers received unusually large severance when they left the bank, with the calculations based on their excessive income. The report estimates that these amounted to €9.1 million. Enrique de la Torres pocketed €4.6 million in 2009 when he left the company. Just one year later Miguel Blesa left his post – to be replaced by former IMF chief Rodrigo Rato – and took €2.7 million.

Blesa and Rato are also the primary accused in an ongoing case at the Audencia Nacional court, for the ‘magic’ cards expenses scandal.

Lavish spending on credit cards handed out to Bankia and Caja Madrid executives and directors reached a reported total of €15.5 million between 2003 and 2012.

It is alleged that the cards were misused for personal expenses, including clothing, restaurant bills and travel.

Both Blesa and Rato were ordered to repay a total of €19 million by judges in October.

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  1. This was a bank that was bailed out by taxpayers? I’m shocked. Shocked they only “acquired” 15m. Will they be paying it back? I hope the lenders get their pound of flesh either way.

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