IT could just prove to be his get-out-of-jail card.
The sale of Juan Antonio Roca’s Madrid palace – dubbed ‘villa Roca’ – could give the planning crook enough money to pay off his existing fines.
It comes after his 18th century Villagonzalo Palace went on the market for 28 million euros with a rumoured buyer willing to pay the asking price.
The building, initially built by the Marquis of Ustariz and reformed in the nineteenth century, is the former home of the Count of Villagonzalo.
The ex-Marbella planning chief – currently at the centre of the ongoing Malaya corruption case – bought the 5,520 metres squared property in 2002 with the initial intention of turning it into a hotel.
Now the judge leading the Malaya case has given the green light to the sale which will allow Roca to settle debts with Marbella imposed by the High Court in relation to the trial.
Along with two associates he has been ordered to pay the town hall 22.9 million euros.
The debt has prevented Roca from getting early release in an offshoot of the Malaya case, known as Saqueo, for which he has already been convicted.
He has now already served six years of a seven year sentence, but the judge has refused to allow early release until the fine is paid.
He still faces further jail time for other aspects of the Malaya case, Europe’s biggest ever fraud investigation.
The house is one of Spain’s most expensive properties.
The country’s current record is the sale of an estate in Mallorca last year for an incredible 125 million euros.
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