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Spanish minister linked to offshore firms resigns

Published 15/04/2016

Jose Manuel Soria's resignation came days before he was due to appear in Spain's Parliament to explain his claim that he never ran or owned a Bahamian offshore company (AP)
Jose Manuel Soria's resignation came days before he was due to appear in Spain's Parliament to explain his claim that he never ran or owned a Bahamian offshore company (AP)

Spain's acting industry minister, whose name has been linked to offshore companies, has resigned, the ruling Popular Party said.

Jose Manuel Soria's resignation from Parliament and his ministerial posts came days before he was due to appear in Parliament to explain his claim that he never ran or owned a Bahamian offshore company, although his name appeared on leaked documents identifying him as director of a firm.

Spain's El Confidencial digital news site this week published a September 1992 document naming him and another man as one of two directors of company named UK Lines Ltd.

Mr Soria, who also held the energy and tourism portfolios, told reporters on Monday that he never "had shares, nor participation, nor any position of responsibility" with the company. He said a British company with that name was a service provider for a family shipping business he used to run.

Later, apparent contradictions in his explanations and further reports that he allegedly had an offshore company in Jersey led to increased calls from opposition parties for his resignation.

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