Mayor Rodrigo Sánchez (PP) and his brother Francisco had an old cortijo on a plot of land in the middle of nowhere, and took advantage of Rodrigo’s position to knock it down and rebuild it. They also extended the family home and added a swimming pool.
But the environmental police obtained a order stopping the building works when they spotted what was going on, but the brothers simply laid low for a bit and continued building once the police stopped keeping an eye on them.
The Judge said that he considered that both brothers knew full well that they were building on non-urbanisable land, that any request for a building permit would have been rejected because of the rural nature of the land, and that they showed a considerable contempt for due process of law.
Judge Manuel José Rey Bellot gave them both a years jail for urban corruption, plus nine months for contempt of court in ignoring the order stopping the works. He also ordered the home to be razed at the brothers costs, and added a fine of 10€ a day for 15 months. A further sanction of 21 months inhabilitation from public office or working in the building industry was added.
The brothers are expected to appeal to the provincial court. As the sentence is under two years, the brothers can ask the penal service to commute the jail time to a suspended sentence (which is normally granted).