Lloret de Mar deputy mayor arrested for alleged links with 'Russian mafia'
MADRID, January 29 - RAPSI. Josep Valls, the deputy mayor of the Spanish city of Lloret de Mar, has been arrested on Tuesday morning for money laundering and having connections with the Russian mafia, according to a Spanish public broadcaster.
Last Friday, the Civil Guard and the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office arrested four suspects, including Andrei Petrov, an assumed leader of the Russian mafia, upon Judge Eloy Velasco's request. The arrests were the result of a case earlier opened against Petrov, who has been charged with money laundering, forgery, and having corrupt relations with the local authorities.
On Monday, Petrov, who was denied bail, told the court that he had paid for former Mayor Javier Crespo to make two trips to Russia. Crespo has denied receiving any gifts or monetary rewards from Petrov. However, Crespo stated that Petrov paid for him to visit his companies in Russia to assess the possibility of forging a partnership between the firms and Lloret de Mar.
Valls served as a municipal adviser on urban development during Crespo's tenure as mayor. He was arrested on Tuesday in his home. Petrov's brother and alleged accomplice Konstantin Mishanin and former Lloret de Mar urban architect Pilar Gimeno, who is said to have been a mediator between Petrov and the city council, have also been arrested. So far, eight suspects have been arrested for having connections with the mafia.