Sean Connery subpoenaed in Spanish corruption probe

7th October 2010, Comments 0 comments

Oscar-winning film star Sean Connery and his wife have been subpoenaed to testify before a Spanish judge in an investigation into a property scandal, court sources said Thursday.

The 80-year-old actor, who currently lives in the Bahamas, was named in May in the investigation dubbed "Goldfinger" after the 1964 James Bond film and which involves the sale of his luxury seaside villa near the jet-set resort of Marbella.

Connery sold the villa, named Malibu, in 1999 reportedly for around nine million dollars (6.5 million euros).

The villa was subsequently knocked down, and a four-storey luxury apartment complex with 72 flats was built on the land where it once stood in 2004-2005, despite planning rules which said only five homes could be constructed on it.

In May police raided the Madrid and Marbella offices of a law firm which is believed to have handled the sale of the firm.

The Scottish actor and his French-born wife, Micheline, have been summoned to appear before the judge in Marbella on October 15, court sources said.

The two have not been arrested and are not facing any charges in the case.

The regional newspaper Diario Sur reported Thursday that British authorities in Spain had provided the court with the couple's address in the Bahamas.

The judge said that if they fail to appear he "may use all legal means under both the national and international law to compel them," the paper said.

It said among others named in the case are former mayor of Marbella Julian Munoz and the city's one-time chief of urban planning, Juan Antonio Roca, who are on trial in the Malaga property corruption scandal that led to the dissolution of the town council in the glitzy resort of Marbella in 2006.

© 2010 AFP

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