A photograph accused Iñaki Badiola (San Sebastián, 58 years old), former president of the Royal Society, who has been sentenced to ten years and eight months in prison as the author of various tweets through the Gipuzkoa Confidencial account, in which, according to the sentence, he slandered and insulted various politicians, judges and journalists. The image, of a Treasury official, was the loose end of Badiola. It was published in a tweet from the account that the former president said he did not manage, but only he could do it, because it was taken during a meeting alone between the two.
Judge Santiago Romero’s resolution also establishes a fine of 180,000 euros, and compensation for a total of 195,000 euros to those injured. Badiola possibly will not go to prison, since, individually, each of the eight sentences imposed on him does not exceed two years in jail, so his execution will be suspended. The Gipuzkoa Prosecutor’s Office had requested to impose 66 years in prison on the San Sebastian businessman, as well as fines and compensation of more than three million euros.
Badiola intensified a crusade, which he had already started during his presidency, once he was ousted from office on December 20, 2008, when the club’s majority shareholders united to get him out. It was in a massive assembly at the Anoeta velodrome, which ended with the winning candidate, the current president Jokin Aperribay, having to leave escorted by the Ertzaintza, in the face of the vehemence of those who supported Badiola, who since he had taken office , with Real Sociedad in the Second Division, attacked the previous leaders of the club.
“Football is absolutely rotten. We, at Real, want to go head-on and change things ”, was his declaration of intent. From that moment he launched into denouncing employees, previous leaders and Gipuzkoan institutions. He accused the doctors of the club of doping practices and assured that the initials RSOC that appeared in the documents seized from Eufemiano Fuentes during Operation Puerto, referred to the Real. He implicated the previous president, José Luis Astiazaran. He also assured that the San Sebastian club had paid premiums to third parties and showed documents that allegedly supported the accusations. He also accused the manager, Iñaki Otegi, of receiving payments in black money, guaranteed by the Gipuzkoa Foral Treasury.
After being forced to leave the presidency, and according to the sentence that sentenced him, he continued to denounce the alleged irregularities within the Real, and according to the judge, “it can be concluded, without any doubt, that both the ownership of the Twitter accounts of Gipuzkoa Confidencial as well as the tweets published in them are authored by Mr. Iñaki Badiola”, who during the trial that took place in January in San Sebastián Criminal Court number 3, only took the floor to “state that I have not created those accounts or posted that information. And there my statement ends. I have nothing more to express, it is foreign to me”.
In the trial, the Deputy General of Gipuzkoa, Markel Olano, testified, four magistrates, a notary, heads of the Foral Treasury and a Justice official. The tweets from the account that Badiola managed accused them of participating in cases of child pornography and corruption.
The judgment concludes, without any doubt, that the Gipuzkoa Confidencial account belonged to Badiola, and this conclusion is reached based on the expert report from the Ertzaintza, which ensures that 99% of the tweets had been written by former president of the Royal Society. In addition, “there is a common thread between the tweets, the victims and Mr. Badiola, because all of them, in one way or another, have had some direct or indirect relationship with him.” The judge estimates that Badiola blamed the loss of the Real’s presidency, “among others, the Basque Newspaper”, and he thought that the Provincial Council had persecuted him fiscally. In addition, he “had seen how from the courts of San Sebastián he had been convicted, dismissed appeals or inadmissible complaints against his interests.”
But what ended up incriminating Badiola was a photograph that, according to the judge, fills in “that 1% that could not complete the expert report.” It was “the only mistake made by whoever tried to maintain the anonymity of the account.” It was an image of a person in charge of the Treasury who carried out various inspections of the former president. She appeared in several tweets from the Gipuzkoa Confidencial account and had been taken in a room where Badiola and the official met with no one else present. For the judge, “the logical thing would have been to have offered a credible explanation or to have provided his mobile phone to the investigating court.” He did not do so, and the photograph condemned Badiola as “responsible for eight continuous crimes of slander made with advertising in competition with standards with one crime against moral integrity and five continuous crimes of serious insults made with advertising in competition with standards with a crime against moral integrity”.
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