A German businesswoman sentimentally linked to retired King Juan Carlos of Spain said that the former monarch used her as a figurehead to hide assets and property abroad, in addition to having accounts in Switzerland on behalf of his cousin.
The El Español newspaper broadcast a 2015 audio where Corinna zu Sayn-Wittgenstein – a consultant based in Monaco – was heard saying that she was living a “nightmare” because Juan Carlos had put several properties in Morocco and elsewhere in her name and was claiming them back now that their relationship has ended. If she returns the properties by means of a third party, she fears she could be charged with the crime of money laundering.
“They put the property inside the structure, they do it as a sales contract and then everything seems perfect, of course, they can not say that the beneficiary is the other (in reference to the former king). They say: “She does not want to return the thing.” But if I do, it’s money laundering,” she said in a conversation with businessman Juan Villalonga and commissioner José Manuel Villarejo, who was himself imprisoned in 2017 for the crimes of criminal organisation bribery and money laundering.
“They are putting me under tremendous pressure to return these things, but if I do it I am breaking the law and I could go to jail,” she adds. She also said that the king used her as a figurehead “not because he loved me, but because I am a resident of Monaco”.
In the same conversation, The 53-year-old princess also claimed that Juan Carlos I held bank accounts in Switzerland in the name of his cousin, Álvaro Orleans de Borbón. Borbón has denied the allegations and the Royal palace has so far declined to comment on them.