Now former Undersecretary to the Presidency Valentín Díaz Gilligan. (Photo via EFE)

Valentín Díaz Gilligan, undersecretary of the presidency until he resigned after it was revealed he had US$ 1.2 million in an undeclared bank account, has been charged with suspected money-laundering by a federal prosecutor.

Prosecutor Alejandra Magnano charged Díaz Gilligan today according to the Télam news service, pointing to the funds in an Andorran bank account as reasons to suspect money-laundering. The prosecutor also requested Federal Judge Claudio Bonadio to solicit Díaz Gilligan’s sworn statements of income and assets from the Anti-Corruption Office. The charges are further to a complaint filed last week by Frente para la Victoria Lawmaker Rodolfo Tailhade after the revelation in El País, who accused Díaz Gillian of maliciously omitting the funds in his sworn statement.

Roberto Tailhade (Photo via Perfil)
Roberto Tailhade (Photo via Perfil)

El País reported that Díaz Gilligan hid US $1.2 million in a bank account in Andorra, a country which, until last year, had banking secrecy laws and was considered to be a tax haven. The account was opened in 2012 and remained active until at least 2014, a period of time during which Díaz Gilligan held different posts in the Buenos Aires City administration (coinciding with current President Mauricio Macri’s term as mayor). The account belonged to a company called Line Action, of which Díaz Gilligan was director and shareholder.

The former undersecretary told the Spanish newspaper that the money was not his, and that he was only involved in the company as a favor to a friend. The friend in question, he said, was Francisco “Paco” Casal, a renowned businessman who manages football players and who is also the owner of sports TV channel ‘GolTV.’ He denied any kind of wrongdoing and vowed to clear his name.

The Anti-Corruption Office has opened an investigation into Díaz Gilligan, but Tailhade sought a judicial investigation, wary of what he called the Anti-Corruption’s Office protection of Cambiemos figures.

Money-laundering is punishable by three to 10 years in prison and a fine that could amount to a number between double and 10 times the laundered funds.