Valencia's ex-premier goes on trial in Gürtel suit-gate case

Popular Party's Francisco Camps resigned as regional leader in bid to clear his name

IGNACIO ZAFRA Valencia 12 DIC 2011 - 14:01 CET

Valencia's former regional premier Francisco Camps is finally getting his day in court Monday as he goes on trial on bribery charges for allegedly accepting dress suits and other accessories from the corrupt Gürtel business network, which is thought to have received multi-million-euro contracts from the local Popular Party (PP) government.

Camps, who served as Valencia's chief from 2003 until July this year, when he resigned after his indictment, has denied ever receiving the suits and other dress accessories worth 14,000 euros from the Gürtel network's point man in Valencia, Álvaro Pérez.

The prosecution is expected to call its star witness, a former sales manager at a Madrid men's shop, who will testify how he went to the Ritz Hotel, where Camps was staying, to take measurements for his dress suits. The former tailor at Forever Young, one of the establishments where Camps got his suits, will also be called to explain how his bosses ordered him to remove all the billing records in connection with the purchases.

Ricardo Costa, the former PP secretary general in Valencia, is also standing trial with Camps. It is the first case in the massive Gürtel bribes-for-contracts scandal that has gone to trial.

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Francisco Camps, outside the courthouse. / JUAN CARLOS CÁRDENAS (EFE)

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