The former presidents of the Government Felipe González and José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero will support with their signature the petition for pardon that the family of José Antonio Griñán will soon request from the Ministry of Justice, after the Supreme Court confirmed last month the conviction of the former president of the Board Andalusia for the case of the ERE, as El Confidencial has advanced.
Who is who in the ERE and what is their final sentence
According to the digital information, Griñán’s wife, María Teresa Caravaca, and her son Manuel will register the petition as soon as the full sentence of the High Court is known, which ratified a sentence of six years in prison and disqualification for the former Andalusian president. special for embezzlement and prevarication in that plot.
The request for the clemency measure “for reasons of humanity and equity” will be accompanied by an annex of signatures that will be headed, according to the newspaper, by both González and Zapatero, and which will include the signatures of several ministers of their respective governments. Sources close to former President Zapatero have confirmed to elDiario.es that he “supports the request for pardon” and that he will sign it “when” the appropriate procedural moment arrives.
The Supreme confirmed “by majority” in a decision made public on July 26 the convictions of the two former presidents of the Junta de Andalucía José Antonio Griñán and Manuel Chaves for their participation in the case of the ERE of that autonomous community. In the case of Chaves, the judges of the criminal court confirmed his sentence of nine years of disqualification and in Griñán’s case of six years in prison, which means his entry into prison.
The court thus upheld three appeals and partially one more and dismissed all the others, including those of Chaves and Griñán. For this reason, the Supreme Court has agreed to annul the sentence in the first instance and draft a new one that will be known shortly, when the dissenting opinion is drafted. It will be at that moment when the family of the also former minister registers the request for pardon with the aim of avoiding his entry into prison.
In 2019, the Court of Seville declared proven that in the 1990s the Junta de Andalucía and its Ministry of Employment launched a system of public money aid for companies that hired workers close to retirement age and also to companies in crisis.
A system that was extended between 2000 and 2009 and that went ahead despite multiple objections, among others, from the Intervention of the Junta de Andalucía. These millions of euros were channeled irregularly through the Andalusian Development Institute (IFA) using equally irregular budgetary modifications and avoiding most of the controls and filters of the administration to send the money as quickly as possible to companies and workers.
“Immaculate life trajectory”
The eleven-page document prepared by the family, however, qualifies the conviction for embezzlement as “unfortunate irony” since “throughout his life he has precisely made professional and economic honesty his main value” and defends that the heritage of the politician is “clean and adjusted to that of the public servant”. The family highlights his “irreproachable life trajectory characterized by his fight for democracy.” In the text, they actually include his accounts and properties and note that he is “public and notorious” that after having held the highest positions in the State “his assets prove by itself the clean performance of an exemplary server” .
Another of the arguments that the text adduces to request the measure before Justice is the fact that the sentence was not drafted unanimously but by a majority of three votes in favor and two against. “It is the first time in history that a case of this magnitude (…) is resolved by such a small margin,” they maintain.
González defended his “impeccable moral integrity”
Days after learning of the Supreme Court’s decision, former President González already showed his “perplexity and pain” over the content of the ruling and defended in a statement who was Minister of Health of his Government between 1992 and 1993 and of Social Security and Labor between 1993 and 1996, whose “impeccable moral integrity” was highlighted. “I want to state that if I could appoint him today to be part of a Government of Spain that I presided over, I would do it again,” González wrote, alluding to the “competence and intellectual capacity” of the later president of the Andalusian Government.