Last week The Telegraph newspaper revealed that the extravagant honeymoon of Spain’s Royal Couple, a 2004 trip extending from Cambodia to Fiji, Samoa, California and Mexico, was paid for by his father, then King, Juan Carlos I, who is currently under investigation for alleged corruption.
Josep Cusí, a business friend of Juan Carlos I since the 70s and friend of the dictator Franco, allegedly acted as proxy by footing $269,000 of the $467,000 bill for the current Spanish monarch’s secret honeymoon. According to The Telegraph, Juan Carlos I paid half directly and half indirectly.
Cusí, who has always kept a low profile, is the emeritus king’s close confidant. He has accompanied him during surgical operations and medical check-ups. They have also been together in hunts and private trips. His name appeared in the press in 1984 when he allegedly punched a Spanish journalist in Italy because he had reported that one of his yachts had been sold for $275,000.
Relationship with Dictator Franco
Cusí had a good relationship with Dictator Franco. For twelve years, he traveled to the Pardo palace every Thursday to eat with him, as he confessed during an interview for Radio 4 a few years ago. “We would eat there and then I would give him shooting lessons,” he said.
In the same interview, he confessed to have inherited one of the shotguns of the dictator when he died. “It was an honor for me to receive that gift,” he said.
Relationship with the current king
In 2011, Cusí affirmed to have a good relationship with King Felipe VI. “I met Felipe when he was still in diapers, and we have a great relationship,” he said in an interview.
Following the Telegraph revelations, Spanish society should ask themselves whether the King and his spouse should pay back the money for their 2004 holiday. And if so, how and to who?