Início » Former PM ‘denies’ government favoured Espírito Santo group

Former PM ‘denies’ government favoured Espírito Santo group

Former Prime Minister José Sócrates denied on Tuesday that his government had favoured the Espírito Santo group in the EDP case, considering that this has been an unfounded report repeated by the Public Prosecutor's Office.

“I come to restore the truth of the facts, and I come to testify in favour of Manuel Pinho. The truth is that neither my government nor Manuel Pinho ever favoured the Espírito Santo group in any way. There was never any illegitimate benefit. That is false,” José Sócrates told reporters at the entrance to the court in Lisbon, where he will testify as a witness in the EDP case trial.

The former Socialist prime minister considered that this has been a story “repeated by the Public Prosecutor’s Office over 12 years, creating a huge hoax that has no foundation or support whatsoever”.

Manuel Pinho, who has been under house arrest since December 2021, was minister of economy between 2005 and 2009 during Sócrates’ government.

José Sócrates also said today in court that he would also testify in favour of Manuel Pinho for having been “a very important minister in the development of the technological plan” of his government and for having had “an essential ministry in what is a technological revolution linked to renewable energies”.

The EDP case trial is taking place today at the Campus da Justiça in Lisbon.

Manuel Pinho is accused of passive corruption for an illegal act, passive corruption, money laundering and tax fraud.

His wife, Alexandra Pinho, is on trial for money laundering and tax fraud – in material co-authorship with her husband – while the former chairman of BES, Ricardo Salgado, is charged with active corruption for an unlawful act, active corruption and money laundering.

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