SPAIN BACKGROUND CHECK

Protecting the reputation of the firm must of prime motive of the companies in Spain where companies intends to take up the superior support of background screeners to save the image by getting the processes of background verifications in Spain. Since, these processes are considered to be the primary activity to defend the reliability of wide variety of records, evidence and other vital documents. The extensive use of background verification services in Spain could improve the grim atmosphere created due to excessive deception by the offenders who take the chance to damage the reputation of the companies. These activities are the sure shot for getting the perfect verification of all type of individual or organizations in Spain.

The primary goal of our verification services is to protect the reliability of records by revealing the identity and financial status of individual or organizations in Spain. Our screeners have facilitated the people to exercise our services in any part of Spain including Madrid, Barcelona, Seville, Valencia, Zaragoza, Malaga, San Sebastian, Murcia, Palma, Las Palmas, Bilbao, Alicante, Valladolid, Cordoba and Vigo.

GENERAL INFORMATION

GDP USD1393.0402bn (World ranking 13, World Bank 2013)
Population 46.65 million (World ranking 29, World Bank 2013)
Form of state Parliamentary Monarchy
Head of government Mariano RAJOY (PP)
Next elections 2015, legislative

 

CURRENT LOCAL TIME

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PRODUCTS IN SPAIN

Data Protection

Contribution Details

Diego Ramos

Partner

Law

As a member of the European Union, Spain formally implemented the EU Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC in November 1999 with the Special Data Protection Act 1999 (the “Act”, also known as the “LOPD” in Spain). Nevertheless, from 1992, Spain already had a Data Protection Act (“LORTAD”) that was fully consistent with most of the contents of the EU Data Protection Directive 95/46/EC. The Act, simply represents an up-to-date version of LORTAD, rather than being a major change in the legal framework. Enforcement is through the Spanish Data Protection Commissioner’s Office (“AEPD”). Its last amendment took place in March 2011.

Definition of PersonaL Data

Any information (including numbers, text, graphics, pictures, video, sounds or any other type of data) related to individuals that are identified or identifiable.

Definition of Sensitive Personal Data

Personal data related to political orientation, religion, beliefs, trade union membership, ethnic origin, health and sex life. Each category of sensitive information enjoys, however, a different level of protection. Of note, criminal/administrative infringements data can be included only in the databases of certain public authorities and companies, with individuals being forbidden to do so, whilst other categories allow collection and processing under certain conditions.

National Data Protection Authority

The Spanish Data Protection Commissioner’s Office (“AEPD”, standing in Spanish for “Agencia Española de Protección de Datos”). It is based in Madrid. Regional commissioners exist as well in certain territories, dealing only with data protection issues of the regional public authorities themselves.

Registration

Unlike other EU Member States, Spain does not maintain a register of controllers or of processing activities. Instead, the AEPD holds a registry of databases containing personal information. Registration, carried out through state of the art software provided by the AEPD (called NOTA), is very detailed and identifies in full not only the data controller, but also any data processors supporting it. It contains a clear description of the database contents, the sources of the data, the pur poses for which the data is collected, processed and transferred, as well as the identity of the recipients of the information, with special attention paid to international transfers. Any changes to the database require the registration to be amended.

Data Protection Officers

Although there is no blanket requirement in Spain for organisations to appoint a data protection officer as such, organisations handling personal information to which “medium” or “high” security requirements apply shall appoint a Head of Data Security. The Head of Data Security is not in charge of data protection matters in general, but only the security measures to be applied to databases.

Collection and Processing

Data controllers may collect and process personal data when any of the following conditions are met:

  • the data subject consents;
  • the data controller needs to process the data to enter into or carry out a contract or pre contractual deal to which the data subject is a party so that the contract or deal can be maintained or executed;
  • the data is collected from “public open sources” and the processing is necessary to satisfy a legitimate interest of the data controller or a third party receiving the data, provided that the constitutional basic rights of the data subject are preserved;
  • the processing protects the data controller’s vital interests; or
  • the processing is required by an enactment or to legitimately perform a public function in the public interest.

Where sensitive personal data is processed, one of the above conditions must be met plus one further condition from a separate list of more stringent conditions (explicit and written consent in the case of political, moral and religious beliefs and trade union membership or explicit consent from the data subject plus general interest grounds supported by a law, in the case of ethnic origin, health and sex life).

Whichever of the above conditions is relied upon, the data controller must provide the data subject with “fair processing information”. This includes the existence of a database storing his/ her personal data, the identity and address of the data controller, the purposes of processing, the consequences of supplying/refusing to supply the information, whether it is mandatory or not to supply the information requested, and how the data subject may exercise the rights of access, modification, cancellation and objection to the data.

Transfer

Data controllers may transfer personal data to third parties (group companies being considered third parties for this purpose) if any of the following conditions are met:

  • the data subject consents;
  • the transfer is endorsed by a law;
  • the data is collected from “public open sources”;
  • the transfer to a third party is essential to a contract to which the data subject has become freely and legitimately a party;
  • the transfer is intended for the national or regional Ombudsman (“Defensor del Pueblo”), Public Prosecutor, Judges and Courts, and the Public Finances Court, within their legal faculties;
  • the transfer takes place between public bodies and is intended for historical, statistical or scientific research; or
  • the transfer is urgently needed to protect the health of the data subject or other individuals. Consent can be revoked at any time and will be void if the information provided to the data subject did not allow them to determine the purposes for which the data should be used, or the scope of the activities of the recipient.

These principles apply to transfers within Spain or within the European Economic Area. Transfers of a data subject’s personal data to non EU/European Economic Area countries is similarly allowed under the following circumstances: those countries provide “adequate protection” for the security of the data (e.g. Argentina); if the transfer takes place under a Treaty to which Spain is a party; if it is intended to provide or to request international judiciary cooperation; if the transfer is required for serious medical matters, if it refers to international money transfers; if the data subject consents to it in a unequivocal manner; if the transfer is necessary to execute a contract or a pre-contractual deal between the data subject and the data controller upon a request of the former; if the transfer is necessary to execute, in the interests of the data subject, a contract between the data controller and a third party; if the transfer is necessary to protect a public interest; if the transfer is necessary for the enforcement, exercise or defence of a right at court; or if the transfer takes place from a Public Registry for a legitimate purpose and to a legitimate recipient, following the instructions of a legitimated person.

In any other case, the transfer abroad to non-adequate territories must be authorised in advance by the AEPD (the use of “standard contractual clauses” approved by the European Commission, or the implementation of Binding Corporate Rules easing the granting of such approval).

For the transfer of data to the United States, compliance with the US/EU Safe Harbor principles satisfies the requirements of the AEPD. Consent clauses, however, are deemed valid only if they explicitly mention that the recipient is based in the US and that data  protection laws there do not offer a level of privacy protection equivalent to that applied within the EU.

Security

Data controllers and processors must take appropriate technical and organisational measures against unauthorised or unlawful access or processing, and against accidental loss or destruction of, or damage to, personal data. The measures taken must ensure a level of security appropriate to the nature of the data. “Basic” security measures must be applied to all data, and include, inter alia, control of access to data by employees of the data controller. “Medium” security measures must be applied to data relating to financial services, public security, public tax matters or which may allow data controllers to profile a data subject in detail. These measures include, inter alia, the execution of privacy audits every two years and the appointment of a Head of Data Security. Databases containing sensitive information (as well as data relating to gender violence, and police records) require “high” security measures, including, inter alia, tougher access control and data encryption when communicating the data.

Breach Notification

As of yet, there is no mandatory requirement in the LOPD to report data security breaches or losses to the AEPD or to data subjects. Nevertheless, the organisation is required to record such incidents in the Security Incidents Ledger. The AEPD is entitled to request to see the Security Incidents Ledger at any time. As a matter of fact, Police Forces and Public Offices do normally immediately report to the AEPD any data breach or loss of personal data they may be informed about (e.g. when a claim for the theft of a hard disk is filed by the owner). In March 2012, the Spanish General Telecommunications Act was amended to oblige telecommunications operators to rapidly report data breaches to AEPD and to the relevant data subjects. Rumours on the possibility of extending that obligation to other companies have been heard, but this has not happend to date.

Enforcement

In Spain, the AEPD is responsible for enforcement of the Act. Acting either ex officio or upon a complaint from a data subject (or a public authority, for example the Consumer Protection Office to which the data subject has complained), the AEPD is entitled to start:

  • an investigation procedure, to collect information;
  • a privacy rights protection procedure, when a data controller is refusing to allow a data subject to exercise his/her access, rectification, cancellation or objection rights; and
  • a disciplinary procedure when enough evidence has been gathered to suspect that a data controller has infringed the LOPD.

Notably, the AEPD does not issue any “warnings” to the data controllers asking them to comply with the law. The first notice that, an organisation may receive from the AEPD is the commencement of a disciplinary procedure. As data protection rights are constitutional rights in Spain, negligence or error are not commonly considered as a reason to mitigate the sanction.

Sanctions are essentially monetary fines. They range from EUR 900 to EUR 40,000 for minor infringements, EUR 40,001 to EUR 300,000 for serious infringements and EUR 300,001 to EUR 600,000 for very serious infringements. Very serious and serious infringements are more frequently detected and sanctioned than minor ones. The fines stated here are per infringement, but very often fines are aggregated within a given case to form a larger total fine.

Electronic Marketing

Electronic Marketing is regulated in Spain, in addition to the Spanish Data Protection Act, by the Spanish Act on the Information Society Services and e-Commerce (“LSSI”), as amended in March 2012. The general principle is that deliveries of electronic marketing materials are lawful only if they have been explicitly authorised in advance by the recipients (authorisation that is required not just for individuals, but also when the recipient is a legal entity, broadening here the scope of Spanish Data Protection Act). An exception to this general principle applies to deliveries to clients when the materials refer to products/services that are equal or similar to the ones sold to them in the past by the company sponsoring the advertisement.

Electronic publicity shall (i) be clearly marked as such by means of the terms PUBLI or PUBLICIDAD placed inside the subject line, (ii) shall allow the recipient to opt-out at all times, even by the time of registration, and (iii) shall clearly identify the sponsor of the delivery. It is the sponsor of the delivery, not the electronic publicity company that shall be held liable in case of enforcement. Opt-out shall include an email address when the publicity was delivered by email too. Opt-out procedure shall be simple and free for the recipient of the publicity.

Enforcement shall include, inter alia, fines that, in most cases, shall be between EUR 30,000 and EUR 150,000.

Online Privacy (Including Cookies And Location Data)

Cookies are regulated in Spain, in addition to the Spanish Data Protection Act, by the Spanish Act on the Information Society Services and e-Commerce (“LSSI”), as amended in March 2012.

The new regulation requires data controllers to inform cookies’ recipients (referred to in the LSSI as giving users the “actual opportunity”) – including legal entities – of the existence and use of cookies, their scope and how to deactivate them. Actual opportunity is interpreted by the regulator as a procedure by which the user cannot browse the website, for example, without noticing the invitation to review the above-mentioned information and carrying out an active behaviour (even a simple one like pressing the ESC key) to continue browsing after being presented with the information or the opportunity to review it. A semi-transparent layer on the usual homepage screen is a generally approved mechanism to request the consent. Certain types of cookies (e.g. session cookies) are exempt from these restrictions as per the WP29 criteria released during the summer of 2012. The Spanish AEPD has made known to the public, by the way of a resolution, that in some cases the delivery of cookies to the computer of a user based in Spain may trigger the application of Spanish Data Protection Act in full.

On location data, the local position is that it may be acceptable provided that (i) users are informed at all times on whether the location system is active, (ii) users have agreed to be located and (iii) users have the option (especially when being off-duty if the location data is used in an employment context) to turn off the system

CHAPTER V

On bribery

Article 419

The authority or public official who for his own profit or for the profit of a third party, demands or receives, by himself or through intermediaries, donations or presents or accepts offers or promises for him to carry out in the exercise of his duty an action or omission constituting a crime, will be punished with imprisonment for a period of between two and six years, a fine ranging from the value to triple the value of the donation and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period of between seven and twelve years, without prejudice to the penalty corresponding to the crime perpetrated due to the donation or promise.

Article 420

The authority or public official who for his own profit or for the profit of a third party, asks for or receives, by himself or through intermediaries, donations or presents, or accepts offers or promises for him to execute an unjust act not constituting a crime, related with the exercise of his duty, and he executes it, will be punished with imprisonment for an amount of time ranging from one to four years and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period of six to nine years. If he does not execute the act, the penalty will be imprisonment for a period of between one and two years and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period of three to six years. In both cases, a fine will also be imposed, ranging from the value to triple the value of the donation.

Article 421

When the donation requested, received or promised is aimed at preventing an authority or public official from fulfilling an action which he has to carry out in the exercise of his post, the penalties will be a fine from the value to triple the value of the donation and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period of between one and three years.

Article 422

The provisions of precedent articles will also be applicable to jurors, arbitrators, experts, or any other person who participates in the exercise of official duties.

Article 423

1. The person who corrupts or endeavours to corrupt, authorities or public officials with donations, presents, offers or promises, will be punished with the same penalties of imprisonment and fine as the authorities or public officials in question.

2. Those who accept the requests of authorities or public officials will be punished with the penalty inferior in degree to the one established in the precedent paragraph.

Article 424

When a bribe is made in a criminal case in favour of the defendant by the defendant’s spouse, or another person in a similarly established and affectionate relationship, or by any ancestor, descendant or sibling, either naturally or by adoption or as in-laws in the same degree, the person who bribes will be punished with a fine ranging from three to six months.

Article 425

1. The authority or public official who requests a donation or present or receives an offer or a promise to carry out a characteristic action of his duty or as a reward for an action already carried out, will be punished with a fine ranging from the value to triple the value of the donation and suspension from his public employment or post for a period from six months to three years.

2. In the case of reward for an action already carried out, if this action constitutes a crime there will also be imposed the penalty of imprisonment from one to three years, a fine of six to ten months and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period from ten to fifteen years.

Article 426

The authority or public official who receives a donation or present that is offered to him in consideration of his position, or is offered to him in order that he fulfils an act not forbidden by law, will be punished with a fine from three to six months.

Article 427

The individual who consents occasionally to the request of a donation or present made by an authority or public official, and who reports this fact to that authority which has the duty to make enquiries, before the commencement of any corresponding procedure, will be exempt from punishment, provided that no more than ten days have passed since the date of the facts.

Criminal Code (Extract)

TITLE XIV

On offences against the Public Treasury and Social Security

Article 305.

1. Any person who through action or omission, defrauds the national, autonomous or local Treasury by evading payment of taxes, amounts retained at source or amounts that should have been retained or payments derived from remuneration in kind, obtaining fraudulent tax rebates or enjoying other forms of improper fiscal benefits through the same action or omission, when the amount of the defrauded tax payable, or the amount not paid in retained taxes or the amount of the fraudulently obtained rebate or other fiscal benefit improperly enjoyed, exceeds the amount of fifteen million pesetas, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to four years and a fine of up to six times said amount.

The upper half of the scale of sanctions stated in the previous paragraph will be applied when the fraud is made with the concurrence of any of the following circumstances:

a)The use of intermediate person or persons in such a way that the identity of the party truly obliged to pay the tax is concealed.

b)The transcendence or seriousness of the fraud in terms of the defrauded amount or the existence of an organised structure that affects or could affect a large number of taxpayers.

In addition to the sanctions mentioned, the perpetrator will lose the right to obtain grants or public subsidies and the right to enjoy benefits or fiscal incentives or Social Security incentives for a period of three to six years.

2.For the purposes of determining the amounts established in the previous paragraph, if it concerns periodical or periodical declarations of taxes, retentions, payments on account or rebates, it will be the amount defrauded within the corresponding fiscal period or declaration, and if this period should be less than twelve months, the defrauded amount will correspond to the period of one year. In any other case, the amount will be understood to refer to each of the different concepts for which a taxable circumstance is susceptible to payment.

3.The same sanctions will be imposed when the conduct described in the first section of this article is committed against the Public Treasury of the Autonomous Communities Regions), when the defrauded amount exceeds the amount of 50.000 ecus.

4.Any person who regularises his fiscal situation in terms of the debts that are referred to in the first section of this article, before the Tax Authority have given notice of any investigative actions to determine the fiscal debts that are to be regularised, or in the event of such actions not being undertaken, before the Public Prosecutor, the State Lawyer or the Representative of the Regional or Local Administration have laid a complaint or brought an action against said person, or when the Public Prosecutor or the Examining Judge carry out actions that will allow said person to have formal notice of the commencement of proceedings, will be exempt of criminal liability.

5.The exemption from criminal liability described in the previous paragraph will likewise apply to said subject for possible accounting irregularities or other instrumental falsifications that, exclusively in connection with the fiscal debts subject to regularisation, may have taken place, prior to the regularisation of said person’s fiscal situation.

Article 306.

Any person who through action or omission defrauds the Autonomous Communities’ General Budget or other funds administrated by the Communities, for an amount exceeding fifty thousand ecus, evading the payments which should be paid in or using the funds obtained for any purpose other than that for which they were supposed to be used, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to four years and a fine of up to six times said amount.

Article 307

1. Any person who through action or omission, defrauds the Social Security so as to evade the payment of the relevant contributions and concepts of joint tax collection, obtaining improper rebates or enjoying allowances that are similarly undue and fraudulent, when the amount of defrauded contributions or rebates or allowances exceeds fifteen million pesetas, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to four years and a fine of six times said amount.

The upper half of the scale of sanctions stated in the previous paragraph will be applied when the fraud is made with the concurrence of any of the following circumstances:

a) The use of intermediate person or persons in such a way that the identity of the party truly

obliged to contribute to the Social Security the tax is concealed.

b) The transcendence or seriousness of the fraud in terms of the defrauded amount or the

existence of an organised structure that affects or could affect a large number of

contributors to the Social Security.

2.For the purposes of determining the amount mentioned in the previous paragraph, it will be considered as being that defrauded in each settlement, rebate or allowance, and when these correspond to a period of less than twelve months, the amount will refer to a natural year.

3.Any person who regularises his contributory position with the Social Security in connection with the debts referred to in the point 1 this article, before being notified of the commencement of inspection actions carried out to determine said debts or, in the case that said actions have not been initiated, before the Public Prosecutor or the Social Security Lawyer lays a complaint or brings an action against said person, will be exempt of criminal liability.

The exemption from criminal liability described in the previous paragraph will likewise apply to said subject for possible instrumental falsifications that, exclusively in connection with the debt subject to regularisation, may have taken place, prior to the regularisation of said person’s contributory situation.

Article 308.

1.Any person who obtains a grant, a tax allowance or subsidies from public Administrations for more than ten million pesetas, by falsifying the conditions required for its concession or concealing information that would have prevented its authorisation, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to four years and a fine of up to six times said amount.

2.The same sanctions will be imposed on any person who in the performance of an activity funded by grants from Public Administration for an amount exceeding ten million pesetas, does not comply with the established conditions, by substantially altering the ends for which the grants were conceded.

3.In addition to the sanctions mentioned, the perpetrator will lose the right to obtain grants or public subsidies and the right to enjoy benefits or fiscal incentives or Social Security incentives for a period of three to six years.

4.Any person who in respect of the grants, allowances or subsidies referred to in the first and second sections of this article, repays the amounts received, increased by interest calculated from the time the funds were received at a rate equivalent to the legal rate of interest plus two percentage points, before said person has been notified of the initiation of inspection actions or control in respect of said grants, allowances or subsidies, or in the event of said actions not being undertaken, before the Public Prosecutor, the Treasury Counsel or the Representative of the Autonomous or Local Administration should lay a complaint or bring an action against said person, will be exempt from criminal liability.

The exemption from criminal liability described in the previous paragraph will likewise apply to that person for possible instrumental falsifications that, exclusively in connection with the debt subject to regularisation, may have taken place, prior to the regularisation of said person’s contributory situation.

Article 309.

Whoever improperly obtains funds from the General Budgets of the Communities or other funds administrated by such bodies, for an amount exceeding fifty thousand ecus, by falsifying the conditions required for their granting or by concealing information that would have prevented its authorisation, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to four years and a fine of six times said amount.

Article 310.

Any person who is obliged by the Tax Legislation to keep mercantile accounts, trading books or fiscal registers will be punished with arrest for of between seven to fifteen weekends and a fine of three to ten months should said person:

a) Neglect absolutely the duties and obligations imposed in respect of the direct estimation of fiscal bases regime.

b) Maintain different sets of accounts for the same activity and financial year that hide or simulate the company’s true situation.

c) Not annotate in the mandatory books, the business, activities, operations or in general, economic transactions, or annotates figures different from the true ones.

d) Enter fictitious accounting entries in the mandatory registers.

The consideration as an offence of the situations referred to in c) and d) will require that the tax declarations were not made, or that those that were presented were a reflection of falsified accounts and that the amount, overstated or understated, of the charges or payments omitted or falsified exceeds, without arithmetic compensation between them, the amount of thirty million pesetas for each fiscal year.

TITLE XIX

Offences against Public Administration

CHAPTER I

On the prevarication of public officials and other improper behaviour

Article 404.

Any public authority or official that knowingly dictates an arbitrary decision in any administrative case will be punished with specific disqualification from public employment or post for a period of seven to ten years.

Article 405.

Any public authority or official that, in the exercise of his competence and aware of the illegality, proposes, appoints or concedes the post of a determined public office to any person without the legally established requirement being fulfilled, will be punished with a fine of three to eight months and the suspension from work or public office for a period of six months to two years.

Article 406.

The same fine will be imposed on the person that accepts the proposal, appointment or takes possession of the post mentioned in the previous paragraph, knowing that he does do not fulfil the legal requirements established.

Article 418.

The individual that takes advantage, for himself or for third parties, of secret or price-sensitive information obtained from a public official or authority, will be punished with a fine of up to three times the benefit obtained or provided. If the event causes serious damage to the public cause or to a third party, the punishment will be a prison sentence of one to six years.

CHAPTER V

On bribery

Article 419.

The public authority or official that, for own benefit or that of a third party, asks for or receives, directly or through an intermediary, a gift, or presents or accepts an offer or promise for carrying out, while performing his task, any action or omission that may constitute an offence, will be punished with a prison sentence of two to six years, a fine of up to three times the value of said gift and the specific disqualification from any public employment or post for seven to twelve years, irrespective of the penal sanctions corresponding to the crime committed by virtue of gift or promise.

Article 420.

The public authority or official that, for own benefit or that of a third party, asks for or receives, directly or through an intermediary, a gift, or presents or accepts an offer or promise for carrying out, in the course of performing his task, any unjust action or omission that does not constitute a criminal offence and does in fact execute the unjust action or omission, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to four years, and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for six to nine years, and if the act or omission is not executed, the prison term will be from one to two years and specific disqualification from any employment or post for three to six years. In both cases, in addition a fine of up three times the value of the gift will be imposed.

Article 421.

When the requested, received or promised gift should be in exchange for the public authority or official not carrying out an act that they should while performing his task, the punishment will be a fine of up to double the amount of the gift and the specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period of one to three years.

Article 422.

The foregoing provisions will be equally applicable to juries, arbitrators, experts, or any other person that participates in exercising the public function.

Article 423.

1.Any person who corrupts or attempts to corrupt, through the use of sops, gifts, offers or promises, the public authorities or officials will be punished with the same custodial and financial sanctions as the public authorities or officials themselves.

2.Any person who attends to such requests from public authorities or officials will be punished with sanctions one grade lower than those described in the previous paragraph.

Article 424.

When bribery is involved in a criminal cause to the favour of the offender, and committed by the spouse, common law spouse, ascendant, descendant or sibling, natural or by adoption, the briber will be punished with a fine of three to six months.

Article 425.

1.The public authority or official that solicits a gift or presents or accepts an offer or promise so as to carry out an act inherent to their duty, or as recompense for an act already carried out, will be punished with a fine of up to three times the value of the gift and suspension from practise for a period of six months to three years.

2.In the case of recompense for an action already performed, if this were to constitute an offence, in addition a penalty of a prison sentence of one to three years, a fine of six to ten months and the specific disqualification from any employment or post for a period of ten to fifteen years would be imposed.

Article 426.

The public authority or functionary that accepts a gift that is offered to him in consideration of said person’s function or for the performance of an action that is not legally prohibited, will be punished with a fine of three to six months.

Article 427.

Any person who has acceded occasionally to a request for a gift from a public authority or functionary and has notified the relevant authority responsible for investigating such a circumstance, before the commencement of the corresponding legal procedures and no more than ten days after the date of such an event, will be exempt of any penalty for the offence of bribery.

CHAPTER VI

On the trading in influence

Article 428.

The public authority or functionary that influences another public authority or functionary, on the exercise of the authority of their rank or any other situation derived from their personal or hierarchical relationship with this person or with any other authority or functionary so as to attain a resolution which may directly or indirectly generate an economical benefit for such a person or third party, will be punished with a prison sentence of six months to one year, a fine of up to double said benefit or gain, and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period of three to six years. If the benefit sought was indeed obtained the sanctions to be applied will be in the upper half of the scale.

Article 430.

Those that offer to carry out the actions described in the previous articles, requesting sops, gifts or any other remuneration, from third parties, or accept offers or promises, will be punished with a prison sentence of six months to one year.

In any of the cases that this article refers to, the judicial authority may also impose the suspension of activities of the society, company, organisation or office and the closure of its facilities open to the public for a period of six months to three years.

Article 431.

In all the cases reviewed in this chapter and the previous, the sops, gifts or presents will be confiscated.

CHAPTER VII

On Misappropriation of Public Funds

Article 432.

1.The public authority or functionary that, so as to profit, takes or allows a third party, with the same aim, to take the public funds that are in said persons charge due to their position, will be punished with a prison sentence of three to six years and absolute disqualification for the period of six to ten years.

2.The penalty of a four to eight year prison sentence and absolute disqualification for ten years will be imposed if the misappropriation of funds were especially serious in terms of the amounts stolen or the damage thereby caused or loss produced to the public service. The same sanctions will be imposed if the misappropriated objects have been declared to have historical or artistic value, or if they are goods destined to assuage any public calamity.

3.When the misappropriation is less than five hundred thousand pesetas, there will be a fine of between two and four months, a prison sentence of six months to three years and suspension from practise for six months to one year.

Article 433.

The public authority or official that uses public funds or resources at their disposal due to the nature of their post, for ends other than for the public cause, will be punished with a fine of six to twelve months and suspension from practise for six months to three years.

If the guilty person does not repay the stolen amounts within ten days after the commencement of the legal proceedings, he will be punished with the sanctions contemplated in the previous article.

Article 434.

The public official or authority that, for their own or any other party’s profit, and causing loss to the public services, gives any private application to movable or immovable goods belonging to any autonomic or local state Administration or Entity or Bodies depending on these, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to three years and specific disqualification from any employment or post for a period of three to six years.

Article 435.

The provisions of this chapter extend to:

1.Those that are in charge, for any reason, of funds, revenues or effects belonging to public Administrations.

2.Those legally designated as holders of public sums or effects.

3.Those administrators or depositories of money and embargoed goods, confiscated or deposited by the public authorities, even though these may belong to private individuals.

CHAPTER VIII

On fraud and illegal levy

Article 436.

The public authority or official that, intervening through their post in any of the actions involved in any form of public contracting or in the disposal of public property, connives with interested parties or uses any other method, to defraud any public entity will be punished with a prison sentence of one to three years and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period of six to ten months.

Article 437.

The public authority or official that asks for, directly or indirectly, undue rights or duties or fees, or being due, for amount above the legally established rates, will be punished, without prejudice to the repayments which are legally required, with a fine of six to twenty four months and suspension from practise for six months to four years.

Article 438.

The public authority or official that, taking advantage of his position, carries out any illegal, deceitful or appropriation offence, will be punished with the penalties specifically assigned to these situations, in the upper half of the applicable scale, and the specific disqualification from any public employment or post for two to six years.

CHAPTER IX

On negotiations and activities prohibited to Public Officials and abuse of office

Article 439.

Any public authority or public official who, being responsible for making a report, in the exercise of his duty, concerning any contract, matter, operation or activity, takes advantage of this circumstance to force or make easier his participation in any form, directly or through another person, in such business or activities, will be punished with a fine ranging from twelve to twenty for months and specific disqualification from any public employment or post from one to four years

Article 440.

Experts, arbitrators, liquidators, or disposal specialists that behave in the fashion described in the previous article, in relation to the goods or objects in respect of which they have intervened in the appraisal, division or adjudication, as well as tutors, guardians, or testamentary executors in respect of goods belonging to their wards or the estate, will be punished with a fine of twelve to twenty four months and the specific disqualification from public employment or post, profession or business, guardianship, tutelage or custodianship, as the case may be, for a period of three to six years.

Article 441.

The public authority or public official who – outside situations allowed by laws and regulations ¬exercises, directly or indirectly, any professional activity or gives any permanent or temporary advice, under the dependence of or in the service of private entities or citizens, in matters in which he must ordinarily participate or have handled, advised or decided in the office or body in which he is appointed to or he depends on, will be punished with a fine ranging from six to twelve months, and suspension from practise for a period of one to three years.

TITLE XIX BIS

On crimes of bribery in international commercial transactions

Article 445 Bis

Whoever that, through presents, gifts, offers or promises, bribes or tries to bribe, whether directly or through intermediaries, authorities or public officials whether foreign or from international organizations in the exercise of their post to the advantage of them or of a third party, or complies with their demands in respect to this, in order that they act or refrain from acting in relation to the performance of official duties, in order to obtain or retain business or other improper advantage in the conduct of international business, will be punished with the penalties set forth in Article 423 in each respective case.

SECTION 2

On the usurpation of powers

Article 506.

The public authority or official that, not having the required powers, dictates a general provision or suspends its enforcement, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to three years, a fine of six to twelve months and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period of six to twelve years.

Article 507.

The Judge that improperly assumes administrative powers that he does not have, or impede the legitimate exercise of them by those who do hold them, will be punished with a prison sentence of six months to one year, a fine of three to six months and the suspension from practise for a period of one to three years.

Article 508.

1.The public authority or official that improperly assumes judicial powers or impedes the enforcement of a sentence passed by the competent judicial authority, will be punished with a prison sentence of six months to one year, a fine of three to eight months and suspension from practise for a period of one to three years.

2.The administrative or military authority or official that attacks the independence of Judges, guaranteed by the Constitution, by giving them instructions, orders or intimations related to cases or proceedings that they are judging, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to two years, a fine of four to ten months and specific disqualification from any public employment or post for a period of two to six years.

Criminal Code (Extract)

Title XIV On offences against the Public Treasury and Social Security

Article 305.

1. Any person who through action or omission, defrauds the national, autonomous or local Treasury by evading payment of taxes, amounts retained at source or amounts that should have been retained or payments derived from remuneration in kind, obtaining fraudulent tax rebates or enjoying other forms of improper fiscal benefits through the same action or omission, when the amount of the defrauded tax payable, or the amount not paid in retained taxes or the amount of the fraudulently obtained rebate or other fiscal benefit improperly enjoyed, exceeds the amount of fifteen million pesetas, will be punished with a prison sentence of one to four years and a fine of up to six times said amount.

The upper half of the scale of sanctions stated in the previous paragraph will be applied when the fraud is made with the concurrence of any of the following circumstances:

a) The use of intermediate person or persons in such a way that the identity of the party truly obliged to pay the tax is concealed.

b) The transcendence or seriousness of the fraud in terms of the defrauded amount or the existence of an organised structure that affects or could affect a large number of taxpayers.

In addition to the sanctions mentioned, the perpetrator will lose the right to obtain grants or public subsidies and the right to enjoy benefits or fiscal incentives or Social Security incentives for a period of three to six years.

For the purposes of determining the amounts established in the previous paragraph, if it concerns periodical or periodical declarations of taxes, retentions, payments on account or rebates, it will be the amount defrauded within the corresponding fiscal period or declaration, and if this period should be less than twelve months, the defrauded amount will correspond to the period of one year. In any other case, the amount will be understood to refer to each of the different concepts for which a taxable circumstance is susceptible to payment.

The same sanctions will be imposed when the conduct described in the first section of this article is committed against the Public Treasury of the Autonomous Communities Regions), when the defrauded amount exceeds the amount of 50.000 ecus.

Any person who regularises his fiscal situation in terms of the debts that are referred to in the first section of this article, before the Tax Authority have given notice of any investigative actions to determine the fiscal debts that are to be regularised, or in the event of such actions not being undertaken, before the Public Prosecutor, the State Lawyer or the Representative of the Regional or Local Administration have laid a complaint or brought an action against said person, or when the Public Prosecutor or the Examining Judge carry out actions that will allow said person to have formal notice of the commencement of proceedings, will be exempt of criminal liability.

The exemption from criminal liability described in the previous paragraph will likewise apply to said subject for possible accounting irregularities or other instrumental falsifications that, exclusively in connection with the fiscal debts subject to regularisation, may have taken place, prior to the regularisation of said person’s fiscal situation.

Article 306.

Any person who through action or omission defrauds the Autonomous Communities’ General Budget or other funds administrated by the Communities, for an amount exceeding fifty thousand ecus, evading the payments which should be paid in or using the funds obtained fo

Police Background Check Procedures

Who can apply?

• Citizens can apply.
• Third party applicants can apply with notarised written consent.
• Prospective UK employers cannot apply.

Where?

• Local applicants must apply in person at the regional offices of the Ministry of Justice, Civil Registers throughout Spain or the Central Office of Citizen Services
• Overseas applicants are advised to apply via post, through a third party representative with notarised written consent, or in person at the Registro Central de Penados y Rebeldes (Central Register of Convicted Offenders and Fugitives).
Alternatively, consult the Spanish Consulate for further information.
Applicants with digital ID can apply online.

What must the applicant supply?

Local and overseas applicants must supply:
• Completed 790 form (obtained at office/online).
• Original valid National Identification Card (DNI)/ original valid Residency Card, passport (with valid visa)/ EU identification document.
• Fee receipt.
Third party representatives:
• Completed 790 form (obtained at office/online).
• Subject’s original or certified copy of valid National Identification Card (DNI)/ original valid Residency Card, passport (with valid visa)/ EU identification document.
• Representative’s original or certified copy of valid National Identification Card (DNI)/ original valid Residency Card, passport (with valid visa)/ EU identification document.
• Original or certified photocopy of notarised document granting representative powers to obtain certificate on subject’s behalf.

• Fee receipt.

Applications to the Spanish Consulate:
Spanish applicants in London can apply directly to the Spanish Consulate. The process is practically identical in requirements to those made directly within Spain. They will be required to complete the 790 form, and make the payment as detailed below via bank transfer.
Certificates to be used outside Spain require legalisation/validation. Enquire at office/embassy for validation process.
Employers are advised that searches and certificates are made per name, and ID number/passport number provided. It is encouraged that any aliases or expired passport numbers are provided in subject’s application.

What arethe costs / turnaround times?

Local and Overseas applications:
• Fee of €3.54 (around £2.90)
• Payment can be made online (link provided below)
• Payment can be made by paying at any Spanish financial entity that collaborates with the Tax Agency that has a branch in the country where the certificate is being applied for.
• Direct bank transfer to the blocked account of the Ministry of Justice:
(BANK:BBVA: ACCOUNT NUMBER: 0182-2370-42-0208000060
ACCOUNT HOLDER: Ministerio de Justified-Cuenta Restringida Recaudación Tasas Extranjero (Ministry of Justice-Foreign Fee Collection Blocked Account)
NIF (TAX IDENTITY NUMBER) OF THE ACCOUNT HOLDER: S-2813610-
I IBAN or International Bank Account number: IBAN ES62 0182 2370 4202 0800 0060 Bank Identification Code (BIC) of BBVA: BBVAESMMXXX
Payment can be made in person. Having completed the F790 form, the applicant must take it to any bank, savings bank or credit co-operative that collaborates in tax collection to make the payment.
Applications made in person or by a nominated third party have a standard turnaround of about 3 days. In any other case, the issuing body has 10 days to turn the application around.

Contact Details

Online application:
(Click on “Application for the digital Criminal Records certificate-Online Digital Access”)https://sede.mjusticia.gob.es/cs/Satellite/Sede/en/1215197884559/SDTramite/1288774398533/Detalle.html#solicitudCert (English)
List of Regional Offices:
http://www.mjusticia.gob.es/BUSCADIR/ServletControlador?apartado=buscadorGerencias&lang=en_gb (English)
Postal applications to Central Register of Convicted Offenders and Fugitives:
Registro Central de Penados y Rebeldes
Ministerio de Justica
C/Atocha 13, 28012 Madrid
Or:
Registro de Penados y Rebeldes
Subdireccion General de Penados de Registros
Judiciales
Ministerio de Justicia
C/San Bernardo 45
PB 28015 Madrid
Tel: (+34) 91 390 2037
Fax: (+34) 91 390 2052
Consulate General of Spain in London:
Consulate General of Spain (Consulado General de
Espana)
20 Draycott Place
London SW3 2RZ
Tel: (+44) 020 7594 4921
Fax: (+44) 020 7581 7888
For further information:
http://www.mjusticia.gob.es/cs/Satellite/en/1200666550200/Tramite_C/1215326258560/Detalle.html#quien (English)

What does the certificate look like?

The ‘Certificado de Antecedentes Penales’ conta
ins the following information:
• Full name
• Date of application
• Place of birth
• Date of birth
• Name of parents
• Personal identity number (“Documento Nacional de Identidad” or D.N.I.)
• The Certificate of Convictions lists the criminal history of the subject
or the absence thereof.
Expired convictions will appear too unless the subject has requested the cancellation of these

Spanish Police Certificates

Spanish National’s residing in Spain may apply for a certificate in person or by mail from the Ministry of Justice. If you are a Third Country National (TCN), living in Spain legally, you may also apply for a certificate through the Ministry of Justice. It is not possible for a TCN living illegally in Spain to obtain a police certificate.

Ministerio De Justicia
Registro Central de Penados y Reveldes
C/San Bernardo 45,
28071 Madrid, Spain

For more information on obtaining a certificate follow this link

Spanish National’s living outside of Spain can apply for a certificate through the Spanish Consulate in the country in which they currently reside. If you are a formal legal TCN living outside of Spain currently, you may also contact the Consulate in the country you currently reside to apply for a certificate. Please note that if Spain does not have a reciprocal agreement with the country you currently reside, a police certificate is unavailable.

Spanish Privacy laws & Regulations

The Spanish Data Protection Agency enforces the Data Protection Act in Spain. The Data Protection Act protects the way that personal data is collected and handled in Spain and states that individuals should provide consent prior to the collection of data, unless the law suggests otherwise.

  • Data can only be collected if it is done so for relevant reasons and not in excess;
  • Data that is collected may only be used for the purpose for which is was collected;
  • Data must be up to date and accurate;
  • If the data is found to be inaccurate it needs to be discarded and replaced with accurate data;
  • Once you are finished with the information collected and it has fulfilled its purpose, the data must be discarded;
  • Data that is collected must be stored in a safe location with limited and relevant access.

Data Protection restrictions are in place for countries within the European Union (EU) that do not allow for the transfer of data to countries outside of the European Union. Due to this restriction the Safe Harbor was created. When a company becomes Safe Harbor certified they agree and certify that they will meet the privacy and data protection requirements set forth by the Safe Harbor Directive. Info Cubic is Safe Harbor certified, which allows us to obtain information from the EU.

Risk

Sovereign risk

Spain’s fiscal dynamics are improving, but the impact of a marked increase in growth is being dampened by deflationary pressures. The budget deficit will narrow to within 3% of GDP in 2017, while public debt will peak at around 101% of GDP in 2016. Long-term debt sustainability is vulnerable to swings in investor sentiment.

Banking sector risk

Spain’s solid economic recovery has bolstered the health of its banking sector, which fared well in a detailed review conducted by the European Central Bank (ECB) in 2014. However, significant weaknesses remain, including low profit‘ability and high levels of non-performing loans.

Political risk

The centre-right government has a solid majority, but public discontent is mounting. Political risk has increased ahead of the general election, due in late 2015. Policy continuity is less assured than usual, owing to increased support for two new parties, the left-wing Podemos (which advocates debt restructuring) and the centrist Ciudadanos. Catalonian nationalism has also strengthened.

Economic structure risk

A reduction of unit labour costs has boosted Spain’s external position, bringing the current account into surplus in 2013. We expect a tiny deficit in 2014 before surpluses of around 0.3% of GDP for the remainder of the forecast period. Economic weakness in key euro zone markets remains a risk, as do the bloc’s deep-seated institutional problems.

Travel Risk

Security

The decision to travel is your responsibility. You are also responsible for your personal safety abroad. The purpose of this Travel Advice is to provide up-to-date information to enable you to make well-informed decisions.

Flight disruptions

Due to frequent airline strikes in Spain, flight cancellations and delays may be expected. Check the status of your flight directly with your airline.

Crime

Violent crime is rare. Although assaults against foreigners are infrequent, reports of such attacks in connection with petty crime are a concern.

Petty crime (pickpocketing, purse snatching and other robberies) against tourists occurs, especially in larger cities and around tourist attractions during holidays, festivals and weekends. Thieves are especially active in crowded areas, such as airports, public transportation facilities, roads, hotel lobbies, restaurants, outdoor cafés and tourist attractions. Be extremely cautious with your belongings at all times and in all places.

Thieves work alone or in groups. They use various techniques to distract their victims and steal their belongings. They may also pose as police officers, asking victims to show them valuable belongings (passports, money or cameras); or they may act like Good Samaritans and pretend to help.

In the event of a road-related incident, be extremely cautious about accepting help from anyone other than a uniformed Spanish police officer or Civil Guard. Thieves have been known to fake or provoke a flat tire, and when a motorist stops to help, the thieves steal the motorist’s car or belongings. The reverse scenario has also occurred, whereby a fake Good Samaritan stops to help a motorist in distress, only to steal the motorist’s car or belongings.

In Madrid, known high-risk locations for thieves are the Puerta del Sol area and surrounding streets, Gran Vìa, Plaza Mayor, near the Prado Museum, the Atocha train station, Retiro Park and on the subway. In Barcelona, thefts occur most frequently at the airport and on the airport shuttle bus (Aerobus), on Las Ramblas (often in Internet cafés), in Plaza Real and surrounding streets of the old city, on the subway, Barceloneta beach, Sagrada Familia church, and at the Sants train and bus station.

Theft from rental vehicles is high. Be vigilant in service areas on the highways along the coast. Avoid leaving any luggage or valuables in the vehicle and use secure parking facilities.

More Canadian passports are stolen each year in Spain than anywhere else in the world. Ensure that your passport is protected at all times.

Terrorism

On January 7, 2015, the Spanish Interior Ministry raised the terrorism threat level for Spain from level 2 to level 3 on a scale of 1 to 4. Expect increased surveillance and police presence in areas that may be considered prime targets, such as transportation hubs (airports, train stations) and key infrastructure.

On October 20, 2011, the Basque terrorist group ETA (Euskadi Ta Askatasuna “ œBasque Homeland and Liberty) announced a definitive cessation of its armed activities. Over the past five decades ETA has carried out numerous shootings and bombings across Spain, resulting in many deaths and injuries. The most recent incidents include small-scale bombings that occurred on the island of Mallorca in July and August 2009, a bombing in Madrid in February 2009, and another one in Arrigorriaga in the Basque region in June 2009. Spanish institutions, tourist destinations and transportation hubs have been prime targets in the past. While ETA has renounced violence, protests or rallies may be held to promote the cause of Basque independence. Exercise caution at all times and in all places, monitor local news reports and follow the advice of local authorities.

In addition, there is still a risk of Islamist terrorist attacks. On March 11, 2004, a series of coordinated bomb attacks took place targeting the Madrid commuter train system. The attacks caused 191 deaths and wounded 1,800 people.

Demonstrations and strikes

Demonstrations occur and have the potential to suddenly turn violent. Avoid all demonstrations and large gatherings, follow the advice of local authorities and monitor local media.

Strikes may occasionally lead to disruptions to traffic and public transportation.

Road travel

Be cautious when driving in Spain as driving habits are different from those in Canada.

Travellers may experience delays crossing between Spain and Gibraltar due to increased border controls.

Public Transportation

All major cities have metered taxis. Any extra charges must be posted in the vehicle. Beware of taxi drivers who try to overcharge by not turning on the meter.

Rail service is reliable and high-speed trains link major cities.

Intercity buses are usually comfortable and inexpensive.

See Transportation Safety in order to verify if national airlines meet safety standards.

Scams

Canadians have reported lottery scams whereby they are contacted via the Internet or fax and informed that they have won a substantial prize in the Spanish lottery (El Gordo), when in fact they have never participated in the lottery. They are asked to deposit an amount of money in a bank account to pay taxes and other fees before collecting the prize or coming to Spain to close the transaction.

There have also been reports of a scam whereby a person is informed that he or she is the recipient of a large inheritance, and that funds must be deposited into a Spanish bank account so the inheritance can be processed.

In another common scam, some Canadians have received a bogus email purportedly sent from an individual well known to them and claiming that he or she is in trouble and needs funds.

See our Overseas Fraud page for more information on scams abroad.

Spiked food and drinks

Never leave food or drinks unattended or in the care of strangers. Be wary of accepting snacks, beverages, gum or cigarettes from new acquaintances, as they may contain drugs that could put you at risk of sexual assault and robbery.

General safety measures

Exercise normal safety precautions. Ensure that your personal belongings, passports and other travel documents are secure at all times. Keep a copy of your passport identification page, driver’s licence, train or airline tickets, and credit cards. Safeguard the originals.

Do not leave luggage unattended at any check-in or ticket counter and in hotel lobbies. When travelling by car, always keep valuable belongings out of sight and keep the windows closed.

Avoid frequenting unlit areas and down-market bars, especially at night.

Emergency services

Dial 112 for emergency assistance.

Know Your Customer (KYC) Rules

Spain is a major European center of money laundering activities as well as an important gateway for illicit narcotics entering Europe, although the serious focus of Spanish law enforcement on combating organized crime, drug trafficking, and money laundering during the past five years has reduced the country‘s attractiveness as an entry point.

Drug proceeds from other regions enter Spain as well, particularly proceeds from hashish from Morocco and cocaine from Latin America. Passengers traveling from Spain to Latin America reportedly smuggle sizeable sums of bulk cash. Informal money transfer services facilitate cash transfers between Latin America, particularly Colombia, and Spain. Spanish security forces reportedly discovered at least 119 organized crime groups (including Russian, Eurasian, Chinese, and Italian groups) operating in the country that were engaging in money laundering during 2010. Of the 175 police investigations against money laundering in 2010, 58% were linked to drug trafficking, particularly of cocaine, heroin, and hashish; 17% involved political corruption; while 12% were related to value added tax fraud, mainly involving vehicle trafficking. Tax evasion in internal markets also continues to be a source of illicit funds in Spain.

An unknown percentage of drug trafficking proceeds are invested in Spanish real estate, particularly in the once-booming coastal areas in the south and east of the country, though less so since the speculative real estate bubble burst in 2008. Criminal groups also place money in other sectors, including services, communications, automobiles, art work, and the financial sector.

KNOW-YOUR-CUSTOMER (KYC) RULES:

Enhanced due diligence procedures for PEPs:

A PEP is an abbreviation for Politically Exposed Person, a term that describes a person who has been entrusted with a prominent public function, or an individual who is closely related to such a person. The terms PEP, Politically Exposed Person and Senior Foreign Political Figure are often used interchangeably

    • Foreign PEP: YES
    • Domestic PEP: YES

Spain – KYC covered entities

The following is a list of Know Your Customer entities covered by Spanish Law:

    • Banks
    • Mutual savings associations
    • Credit companies
    • Insurance companies
    • Financial advisers
    • Brokerage and securities firms
    • Pension fund managers
    • Collective investment schemes
    • Postal services
    • Currency exchange outlets
    • Individuals and unofficial financial institutions exchanging or transmitting money
    • Realty agents
    • Dealers in precious metals, stones, antiques and art
    • Legal advisors and lawyers
    • Accountants
    • Auditors
    • Notaries
    • Casinos

Spain – Suspicious Transaction Reporting (STR) Requirements:

Number of STRs received and time frame: 3,172 in 2010

Number of CTRs received and time frame: 707,968 in 2010

The following is a list of STR covered entities covered by Spanish Law:

    • Banks
    • Professional money changers, credit intermediaries, payment systems and managers, and lending firms
    • Life insurance entities and insurance companies that provide investment services
    • Securities and investment service companies, collective investment, pension fund, and risk capital managers
    • Mutual guarantee companies
    • Postal wire services
    • Real estate brokers, agents and developers
    • Auditors, accountants, and tax advisors
    • Notaries and registrars of commercial and personal property
    • Lawyers, attorneys, or other independent professionals when acting on behalf of clients in financial or real estate transactions
    • Company formation and business agents
    • Trustees
    • Casinos, gaming and lottery enterprises
    • Dealers of jewelry, precious stones and metals, art, and antiques
    • Safekeeping or guaranty services
    • Foundations and associations

MONEY LAUNDERING CRIMINAL PROSECUTIONS/CONVICTIONS:

Prosecutions: Not available
Convictions: Not available

ENFORCEMENT AND IMPLEMENTATION ISSUES AND COMMENTS:

Spain has long been dedicated to fighting terrorist organizations, including ETA, GRAPO, and more recently, al-Qaida. Spanish law enforcement entities have identified several methods of terrorist financing: donations to finance nonprofit organizations (including ETA and Islamic groups); establishment of publishing companies that print and distribute books or periodicals for the purposes of propaganda, which then serve as a means for depositing funds obtained through kidnapping or extortion; fraudulent tax and financial assistance collections; the establishment of ―cultural associations‖ used to facilitate the opening of accounts and provide a cover for terrorist financing activity; and alternative remittance system transfers.

Spanish authorities recognize the presence of alternative remittance systems. Informal non-bank outlets such as “locutorios” (communication centers that often offer wire transfer services) are used to move money in and out of Spain by making small international transfers for members of the immigrant community. Spanish regulators also note the presence of hawala networks in the Islamic community.

Spanish law does not allow civil forfeiture. The Finance Ministry, as the sanctioning organ, opened 580 investigations in 2010 for cash movements. Forty million euros (approximately $52.7 million) were initially confiscated; 20 million euros (approximately $26.3 million) were ultimately retained as fines. During the first half of 2011, 250 cases were opened and over 10 million euros (approximately $13.2 million) were confiscated. Carrying more than 100,000 euros (approximately $131,700) in cash within the country is not allowed. If the authorities discover an amount larger than that, they can seize and hold it until proof of legal origin is provided. According to press reports, the police and civil guard opened 175 investigations in 2010.

On April 29, 2010, Spain enacted Law 10/2010, on preventing money laundering and terrorist financing. The law introduces a risk-based approach to preventing money laundering and terrorist financing and imposes stringent requirements on financial institutions as well as designated non-financial businesses and professionals. Additionally, the law greatly enhances authorities‘ capacity to combat terrorist financing by placing greater requirements on financial institutions and other businesses, and by strengthening penalties and monitoring and oversight. The new law entered into force immediately; however, implementing regulations will not be approved until 2012; until then, many of its provisions are not being implemented. The Spanish government is waiting for the approval of the new FATF Recommendations to develop the implementing regulations in conformity with international standards. In the interim, the implementing regulations for Law 19/1993, updated in 2005, remain in force.

In 2010, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), the financial intelligence unit of the U.S., suspended information sharing with its Spanish counterpart, the Executive Service for the Prevention of Money Laundering (SEPBLAC) due to an apparent unauthorized disclosure of FinCEN information by SEPBLAC. SEPBLAC has addressed the improper disclosure issues and has taken steps to ensure the protection of FinCEN‘s information, including negotiating an updated version of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with FinCEN. FinCEN will resume information exchange with SEPBLAC after signing the MOU. The security forces and the judiciary exchange information with the U.S. related to money laundering.

A working group has been created within the Commission for the Prevention of Money Laundering to promote the collection of statistics. Currently this information is not centrally collected. Spain should maintain and disseminate statistics on investigations and prosecutions.

 

Address Format

Recipient

RECIPIENT
[URBANISATION]
STREET_TYPE STREET_NAME, HOUSE_NUMBER [FLOOR] [APARTMENT]
POSTAL_CODE LOCALITY
SPAIN

Sample

Isidre Varo
Avenida de Canillejas a Vicalvaro 82 piso 4
28022 MADRID
SPAIN

Summary

Calendar GMT Reference Actual Previous Consensus Forecast
2015-01-30 08:00 AM Q4 2.0% 1.6% 1.9% 1.6%
2015-02-26 08:00 AM Q4 2.0% 1.6% 2.0% 2.0%
2015-04-30 08:00 AM Q1 2.6% 2.0% 2.5% 2.55%
2015-05-28 08:00 AM Q1 2.0% 2.6% 2.6%
2015-07-30 08:00 AM Q2 2.83%
2015-08-27 08:00 AM Q2

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