Borbons, un passeig per a tapar el quart exili

Disgraced ex-king returns to Spain

Juan Carlos, the former Spanish monarch, is back in Spain for the first time since leaving the country nearly two years ago amid fraud investigations.

His brief return from Abu Dhabi, where he now lives, comes after prosecutors in Spain and Switzerland dropped fraud cases, notably over whether he had received about $100 million in kickbacks in connection with a high-speed rail contract in Saudi Arabia.

The inquiries have significantly tainted his reputation and that of the monarchy. One of his daughters was fined for corporate fraud, and her husband was sentenced to prison. On Wednesday, the royal household stressed in a statement that the capital of the United Arab Emirates was now Juan Carlos’s residence “in a permanent and stable fashion.”

Details: The former king planned to meet his wife, Queen Sofía, and other members of his family at the royal palace on the outskirts of Madrid, and to attend a weekend sailing regatta.

History: Juan Carlos, 84, came to the throne in 1975, two days after the death of the dictator Francisco Franco. He was a key figure in Spain’s transition to democracy, but his lavish lifestyle, extramarital affairs and business dealings came under a harsh spotlight during a financial crisis a decade ago.

20-V-22, nytimes