The judge underlines that BBVA has contributed all relevant results for the preliminary investigation, accepts the bank's offer to make documents available and dismisses all requests from other parties.
Spanish High Court’s judge Manuel García-Castellón has accepted BBVA’s offer to make available to him all ‘hits’ obtained in the forensic analysis. The bank has been reiterating this offer since August 2019. This internal, voluntary, objective, profound and thorough investigation has been carried out by PwC, at the request of BBVA’s external legal counsels (Garrigues & Uría Menéndez).
In its judicial order, the Court underlines the bank’s cooperation and highlights that “BBVA has contributed all the relevant results for the preliminary investigation, among thousands of files and emails made available by the bank.” Likewise it states that “BBVA’s representatives have made available before this Central Court of Investigation all the hits (2.3 million) obtained by PwC using keywords, to clear any doubts that what BBVA contributed to the case is the actual result obtained from the investigation. That is precisely what prompted the specifically-appointed representative from BBVA to be questioned extensively about all of them,” thus highlighting the transparency in the bank’s actions.
The judge resolves “to make available to the Unit of Internal Affairs (UAI) of the (Spanish) National Police in charge of the police investigation of this procedure the hits obtained by PwC using keywords (2.3 million).” And it also clarifies that “the UAI will proceed with a new search, limiting the keywords to the names of the assignments ordered to Mr. Villarejo and the main parties investigated in said projects, according to the documents seized from him. Once this search is made, the result will be made available to this Court and the hits will be returned to the banking institution.”
Additionally, the judge dismisses all requests presented by several parties involved in the case since May through a multitude of filing, in which they asked access to the hits of the forensic analysis, requested generic and unjustified searches to PwC, the opening of new lines of investigation and the declaration of certain people as investigated parties.
BBVA welcomes this judicial resolution as it allows to move forward with the investigation by the Spanish High Court, which -as we have always maintained- is the one that prevails over any other initiative and the one that must clarify what happened.
Note: In case of discrepancy, the Spanish version prevails over the English translation.