The current chief prosecutor of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, María Farnés Martínez Frigola, was proposed yesterday by the Attorney General of the State, Álvaro García Ortizto occupy the position of Superior Prosecutor of the Canary Islands during the holding of the Fiscal Council Plenary. This is a new rise in the career of Martínez Frigola within the Public Ministry. During her professional career, especially in recent years, she has been characterized by being focused on her professional work and enormous discretion before public opinion, despite having addressed relevant issues such as Anti-corruption delegate.
Until now, María Farnés has not been linked to any of the associations in her professional field, although in the process of yesterday he received the votes and support of the Progressive Union of Prosecutors (UPF).
This month marks two years since Maria Farnes Martinez Frigola offered her inaugural speech as chief prosecutor of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, after having been appointed in July 2020 for said position, in which she relieved Carmen Almendral, Died in January of this year.
In recent years he has been characterized by focusing on his work and by enormous discretion
María Farnés Martínez Frigola was in charge of the Santa Cruz de Tenerife Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office for many years and was the one who made the accusation by the Public Ministry in one of theemblematic cases of corruption in the Canary Islands, such as the case known as Las Teresitas, which culminated in the imprisonment, among others, of the former mayor of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Miguel Zerolo, and the businessmen Antonio Plasencia and Ignacio González Martín; the latter died in the Tenerife II penitentiary center when he was serving his sentence for said procedure.
The other candidate prosecutors to occupy the position of superior prosecutor in the Autonomous Community of the Canary Islands were Ernesto Vieira, from the Association of Prosecutors (AF), and Antonio López, from the Professional and Independent Association of Prosecutors (Apif).
María Farnés’s relationship with the Administration of Justice began when she was a teenager, at the age of 14, since she entered the District Court as meritoriousl of the town where he was born, Santa Coloma de Farnés. Between 1975 and 1987 she worked as an assistant to the Administration of Justice in a District Court and in a Court of First Instance in his municipality, as well as in the Provincial Court of Girona. At the same time that she developed her work activity, she dedicated herself to studying. In 1984 she obtained a law degree from the National Distance Education University (UNED).
He became a prosecutor on June 11, 1986 and, four and a half years later, in January 1991, a second category prosecutor.a. His career in the Public Ministry began in the Provincial Prosecutor’s Office of San Sebastián. And twelve months later, in 1987, he began to carry out his functions in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, where he has remained until today. From 2009 to 2020 he served as a prosecutor lieutenant.
In his 35 years of activity in the Prosecutor’s Office, he has handled relevant matters. For example, he dealt with the preliminary proceedings for a multitude of scams through the timeshare system, with some 300 affected, which was instructed in one of the Granadilla Courts. In addition, he made the public accusation in the matter of several murders committed in the municipality of Adeje and attributed to a gang of Kosovar Albanians dedicated to robberies in industrial warehouses and other companies. María Farnés Martínez Frigola also intervened in the procedure initiated as a result of documentation found in the entries and records made in the Philatelic Forum Case, instructed by the central investigating courts for crimes of bribery, money laundering, prevarication and embezzlement of public funds. In this matter, a former president and a former director of the Port Authority of Santa Cruz de Tenerife, officials of the City Council of the capital of Tenerife and businessmen of the Island were investigated.
It does not belong to any association, but was supported by the Progressive Union of Prosecutors (UPF)
Years later, he worked on a case instructed by the Court of First Instance and Instruction number 4 of La Orotava for the crimes of kidnapping, illegal detention and robbery with force, which was allegedly attributed to an organization made up of Romanian citizens. María Farnés exercised the public accusation in the matter of the illegal financing of the CCN political party in Santa Cruz de Tenerife, as well as in the preliminary proceedings of the so-called Parque Marítimo Case.
In his particular trajectory, there is the procedure followed for a continued crime of administrative prevarication against the former mayor of El Rosario Macario Benítez, for the hiring of 163 employees without prior bidding.
He participated in the abbreviated procedure followed by a Court of Granadilla de Abona in which several officials of the City Council of that municipality and several businessmen from the South of the Island were investigated for the crimes of embezzlement of public funds, bribery and money laundering. Twelve years ago he also intervened in the matter in which various workers of the Titsa transport company, dependent on the Cabildo de Tenerife, were implicated for the crimes of fraud, reception and money laundering. His efforts also focused on the abbreviated procedure followed to lift the veil on a business network of 73 companies, some of them located in tax havens, for the crime of Social Security fraud. This case was taken on by the Special Prosecutor against Corruption and Organized Crime. These are some examples of his activity.
“Serve the citizen”
María Farnés Martínez affirmed in September 2020 that what is really important is not the position held in the Public Ministry or the destination, but “the daily, discreet and effective work carried out by a prosecutor, which is the best example of the commitment with the rule of law and citizens. After more than three decades of her career, she explained that her initial enthusiasm to end crime in the world “has subsided”, but “the only thing that has not diminished has been the pride of being a prosecutor; being convinced that all my work must always be focused on serving the citizen to the best of his knowledge and ability». Between 2007 and 2018 she received decorations from the National Police, the Local Police of Santa Cruz de Tenerife and the Civil Guard. She has the First Class Cross of the Order of Saint Raymond of Peñafort, granted by the Minister of Justice in 2017. | Peter Fumero