Juan Antonio Roca has enjoyed just eight days of freedom. Unexpectedly a High Court in Madrid sent him back behind bars on Wednesday, this time for the case known as ‘Saqueo I’, fixing bail at three million euros. The court believes that there is a significant risk of him fleeing the country bearing in mind that the trial is imminent. In the ‘Saqueo I’ Roca faces a sentence of ten years in prison for allegedly embezzling 26.7 million euros from the Marbella Town Hall coffers.
Roca had gone to the Madrid court on Wednesday for a hearing at the request of the PP (acting as private prosecutors in the case) who called for him to be imprisoned unconditionally, a request that was backed by the public prosecutor. The judge justified his decision to put Roca back behind bars by the severity of the charges and the proximity of the trial as well as the well-founded suspicions that Roca is hiding significant sums of money in tax havens, which would make it even easier for him to disappear if he wanted to.
Roca’s lawyer said that the three million euro bail imposed would be “impossible” to raise and announced that he would appeal against the decision. He also said that he would apply for Roca to be transferred from the Soto del Real prison in Madrid to Albolote in Granada so that he could be closer to his family.
Roca paid one million euros in bail just over a week ago in order to regain his freedom after being held in prison for more than two years for the Malaya case. But that was not his first experience: in 2002 he paid 450,000 euros to escape jail in another case.