Princess Cristina is to move to Geneva with her children but her husband, Iñaki Urdangarin, will remain in Barcelona to follow the progress of the judicial investigation into his finances, sources close to the royal couple told EL PAÍS.
Urdangarin, the Duke of Palma, and his former business partner Diego Torres stand accused of embezzling millions in public money through the former’s non-profit Nóos Institute. However, the courts have placed no travel restrictions on the king’s son-in-law and he does not have to seek judicial permission to leave the country. If he were to move to Switzerland with his family, he would merely be required to inform the authorities of his change of address.
The royal couple has been seeking an escape route from Spain to shield their children from the unfolding allegations against their father. Urdangarin, a former professional handball player, had been offered a job as assistant coach of the Qatar national team but was frustrated in his attempt to relocate because he does not hold a coaching license.
Now, the princess has been offered a post by her employer, the savings bank La Caixa, to head up its international foundation. Her duties will include liaising with “various agencies of the UN that are headquartered in Geneva,” the entity said.
The princess was named as a suspect in the case against her husband in April but it was later decided by the courts that there was sufficient evidence against her.
The royal couple had previously lived in Washington, where Urdangarin was a consultant for Telefónica, when the Palma Arena corruption case broke. The investigation into Urdangarin stemmed from that process. In 2007, the Royal House suggested that Urdangarin should try and find work abroad.