Scandal-ridden former King of Spain Juan Carlos, 84, will end his two-year exile in the Middle East in days to visit family weeks after prosecutors dropped criminal investigations against him.
- King Juan Carlos is set to pay a whirlwind visit to friends and family in Spain
- King Felipe VI’s son failed to meet him during a trip to Abu Dhabi over the weekend
- The couple spoke by phone and agreed to meet in Madrid on an unspecified date
- Juan Carlos is in exile after Swiss prosecutors investigate his finances
Scandal-hit former King of Spain Juan Carlos will end his nearly two-year exile this Saturday by returning from his hole in the Middle East, it was claimed today.
The news emerged after months of speculation that the controversial royal would be flying in to see friends and family.
Juan Carlos’s son, King Felipe VI, did not meet his father during an official visit to Abu Dhabi over the weekend to convey his condolences following the death of UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, at the age of 73.
Scandal-hit former King of Spain Juan Carlos will end his nearly two-year exile this Saturday as he returns from his Middle Eastern hole
The couple spoke by phone and agreed to meet in Madrid on an unspecified date.
Veteran journalist Fernando Onega, who wrote a book about the former king of Spain and is considered a personal friend of the 84-year-old in their country, identified this Saturday as the date of Juan Carlos’s return to the radio program Onda Cero Mas de Uno.
He said Juan Carlos will travel to the Galician resort of Sanxenxo, one of his favorite destinations where he has often been spotted in the past cruising with friends and family.
The shock departure of Spain’s former king in August 2020 led to intense questioning of the country’s monarchy led by its then vice-president, Pablo Iglesias.
His retirement came after Swiss prosecutors opened an investigation into bank accounts allegedly held by Juan Carlos in tax havens.
Spain has launched its own investigations based in part on information shared by Switzerland, including one into money the former king allegedly received as part of his involvement in a high-speed rail contract in Saudi Arabia. .
Juan Carlos’ son King Felipe VI did not meet his father during an official visit to Abu Dhabi over the weekend (pictured)
Spanish royal expert Pilar Eyre claimed shortly after leaving Spain and it emerged he was staying at the £3billion seven-star Emirates Palace hotel that he was ‘in arms’ of a longtime mistress in her hotel hideaway.
Juan Carlos, in a letter to the current King of Spain Felipe VI announcing his decision to leave his homeland, wrote “Guided by my conviction, I can offer the best service to Spaniards, to their institutions and to you as As King, I communicate to you my decision to move away from Spain.
“It is a decision that I take with deep feeling but with great serenity.
“I have been King of Spain for almost 40 years and during all this time I have always wanted the best for Spain and for the Crown.”
He signed the letter: “With affection as always, your father.”
It later emerged that he had already left Spain by the time the letter was released by the royal household.
In March, Spanish prosecutors cleared the way for Juan Carlos’ temporary return to Spain by suspending criminal investigations against him, claiming that all the alleged crimes had been committed or that his status as head of state at the time the protected from lawsuits.
Juan Carlos stayed at the £3billion seven-star Emirates Palace hotel (pictured)
The decision was made after paying millions of pounds in tax adjustments.
Spain last week dropped an investigation into suspicions that national companies paid bribes to build a high-speed rail link in Saudi Arabia.
Juan Carlos still faces a possible trial in the UK for stalking former lover Corinna zu Sayn-Wittgenstein.
She is suing him in the UK and High Court judge Mr Justice Nicklin recently ruled the suit could go ahead after rejecting his lawyers’ argument that he was ‘entitled to immunity from the jurisdiction of the English courts in his capacity as a senior member of the Spanish Royal Family.’
Juan Carlos, who was groomed by Francisco Franco but played a key role in defeating a 1981 coup led by sympathizers of the late dictator, ruled as King of Spain from 1975 to 2014 when abdicated in favor of his son.
The corruption scandals he has been embroiled in since passing the torch to King Felipe VI, whose wife Letizia is a former journalist, have left his reputation in tatters.
Apart from Sanxenxo, Juan Carlos is also expected to spend some time in Madrid.
He is expected to return to Abu Dhabi after his two-day visit, which has not yet been confirmed by the Spanish royal house, but is seen in Spain as a sanctioned announcement by Juan Carlos due to the way it was made public. .