The Court of Accounts (TCu) has once again detected donations to Vox that violate the Party Financing Law, as stated in its latest Audit Report on the Annual Accounts of Political Parties, referring to the year 2020 and made public this Friday.

As was the case in the 2018 and 2019 financial reports, the control body has detected in the balance sheets submitted by Abascal’s party “unidentified donations” (i.e. anonymous), “in cash” (they must be made by bank account) and “finalist” (the party collects for a specific cause). These are three ways of obtaining income prohibited by the Law on Party Financing.

Anonymous or targeted donations (for example, cash deposited in a collection box with no name recorded) have been prohibited, without exception, since 2007 and have also been considered a crime since 2015 following the reform of the Penal Code in article 304 bis that year. The penalty imposed is a fine, but depending on the amount it can also be imprisonment from six months to four years.

Although it is the only party that fails to comply with all three types of donation, the court has also detected unidentified donations in the case of Catalunya en Comú and Sortu and targeted donations in the case of PdCAt (successor of Convergencia and previous to Junts). All are under the heading of “non-compliances that could constitute punishable offences” and now a preliminary information phase is opening for these possible processes, sources from the court have reported.

The TCu, in fact, has fined Vox this year with more than 200,000 euros for its targeted donations in 2019. Although there is no record of a sanction in this regard, it also found suspicious income through ATMs from alleged sales of merchandising. That year, the court stated in its report that there was “uncertainty” regarding 332,548.09 euros and expressed its doubts about whether part of said income “corresponds to donations and not to the sale of products”, which would violate the law on party financing “since the possible donors have not been identified”. published days later the internal orders that the party had given to its local delegations to regularize cash: “Regularize the money you have for merchandising, in income less than 299 euros,” the treasury said then. The reason why the figure of 299 euros was indicated is because the Organic Law of Financing of Political Parties says in its article that “the benefits derived from promotional activities (…) will require the identification of the transferor when the transfer of assets to the political party is equal to or greater than 300 euros.” This way, they did not have to give the name of the supposed buyer of Vox products such as pencils, caps or t-shirts.

In 2020, the situation was repeated, according to the report presented this Friday: “With respect to income from promotional activities, a total of 102,048.30 euros correspond to unidentified cash income, of which 53 correspond to amounts greater than 300 euros for a total of 29,491.81 euros, which represents a breach.” He insists again in his latest analysis that “there is uncertainty regarding whether part of said income corresponds to donations and not the sale of product.”

It also detects income in cash or PayPal from fees and donations worth almost 100,000 euros or that “fees, contributions and donations for 2,834.50 euros, 10,122.77 euros and 24,516.50 euros, respectively, have been deposited into non-specific bank accounts. .

Public dependency

The Court of Auditors’ report on the parties also highlights the parties’ heavy dependence on public funding (subsidies proportional to their electoral results, state subsidies for security expenses or income from their parliamentary groups): The parties received 179 million from the public coffers compared with the 66 million they received from the private sector (membership dues or contributions from public officials or activists), meaning that they are 73% dependent on the State. Donations from citizens accounted for a meager 3% of income.

In addition to detecting that 14 of the 25 political parties did not comply with the obligation to approve a system for the prevention of criminal risks, it describes the analysis as “unfavorable” for Izquierda Unida, Nueva Canarias and the CUP, finding that “they do not adequately reflect the financial and patrimonial situation.” Now the period of prior information begins to see in which cases an infraction is opened.

The Declaration on the General State Account for 2022 was also presented this Friday, which is “favorable”, but the control court recommends that measures be adopted to resolve the situation of negative net worth of Social Security (calculated in a balance negative of 89,000 million) caused in part, as TCu sources have explained, by assuming expenses that corresponded to the State. The report also reveals a State debt in 2020 of 1.3 trillion.


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