A New Theory on Where Spain's Former King Has Gone

Portugal and the Dominican Republic were initially pegged as his destination
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 9, 2020 6:15 AM CDT
Report: Spain's Former King Is Staying in Luxury in Abu Dhabi
In this June 3, 2014 file photo then King Juan Carlos attends a military ceremony in San Lorenzo de El Escorial, outside Madrid, Spain.   (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza, File)

A clue in the mystery of the former king of Spain's whereabouts: a photo. Following Monday's revelation that Juan Carlos would be moving out of the country—destination unspecified—amidst a financial scandal, reports that he was bound for Portugal or the Dominican Republic emerged. Now Abu Dhabi is looking like it might in fact be his chosen location. The Guardian reports a Spanish newspaper on Friday reported the former king, who is the subject a Spanish corruption probe centered on a high-speed rail contract in Saudi Arabia that Juan Carlos was allegedly involved in after his 2014 abdication, traveled to the UAE via plane and helicopter. It said he is staying in a suite at the government-owned Emirates Palace hotel in Abu Dhabi that can run as much as $12,800 a night.

The BBC cites reports that claim Juan Carlos has taken over a full floor at the five-star hotel and notes that he is said to be close with Abu Dhabi's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahyan. The next day, a photo was published by Spain’s NIUS media group that showed a masked man resembling Juan Carlos getting off a plane in Abu Dhabi. If Juan Carlos is indeed in Abu Dhabi, it's unclear whether that's his final destination or an intermediate locale. One side detail from the Guardian: "Spain and Abu Dhabi have an extradition agreement, signed by Juan Carlos himself in 2010." (Read more King Juan Carlos I stories.)

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