Portuguese ex-premier to be held in jail while fraud, corruption case proceeds

LISBON, Portugal – Former Portuguese Prime Minister Jose Socrates is spending a third straight night in jail as officials continue to investigate him for suspected corruption, money-laundering and tax fraud.

Socrates’s lawyer, Joao Araujo, told reporters that after a preliminary hearing Sunday the investigating judge decided he needs to ask Socrates more questions. He said the interrogation will continue Monday.

The judge must rule whether Socrates should be released or held pending a trial.

Socrates, who was Portugal’s centre-left Socialist prime minister from 2005 to 2011, was detained by police late Friday. The Attorney-General’s office said he and three others are suspected of colluding in crimes.

Officials provided no further details, citing Portugal’s judicial secrecy law which forbids the disclosure of details from ongoing investigations.