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Spanish Health Minister Mato Denies Corruption After Allegations

Feb. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Spanish Health Minister Ana Mato reiterated her “absolute innocence” regarding reports in the Spanish press today that she was a beneficiary of holidays, cash payments and gifts from businessmen who are being investigated for bribing officials.

“I want to reiterate my absolute innocence regarding the confabulations that some media organizations have unloaded upon me,” Mato said in an e-mailed press statement.

The statement came after El Mundo newspaper reported today that between 2002 and 2003 a shell company provided air tickets, hotel rooms, chauffeur services and expensive gifts, and paid for the holy communion party of the daughter of Mato and her then husband Jesus Sepulveda, whom she has since divorced.

“This matter regards an investigation into another person who has already issued a statement expressing that he is the only person responsible for his actions,” she added, referring to declarations made by her ex-husband who is currently under investigation.

El Mundo cited documents sent to Spain’s National Court.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sharon Smyth in Madrid at ssmyth2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Blackman at ablackman@bloomberg.net

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