MADRID (Web Desk/Agencies) – Spain’s industry minister resigned over allegations that he had links to offshore companies, the worldwide “Panama Papers” scandal claimed a fresh political victim on Friday.
Jose Manuel Soria said he had tendered his resignation “in light of the succession of mistakes committed along the past few days, relating to my explanations over my business activities… and considering the obvious harm that this situation is doing to the Spanish government.”
Soria’s troubles began on Monday when Spanish online daily El Confidencial, which has had access to the Panama Papers — millions of files leaked from law firm Mossack Fonseca — said he was an administrator of an offshore firm in 1992.
Soria called a news conference to deny any link to the company, but as the week went by, more allegations emerged from other media outlets, revealing further alleged connections to offshore havens.
It is unclear as yet whether any of his alleged actions were illegal.
Later, in a television interview, Soria said that the events in question had occurred more than 20 years ago and “I don’t remember exactly what happened.”
“I have done absolutely nothing illegal,” he insisted.
Economy Minister Luis de Guindos was later named as his successor in the industry post.