Europe

Spain: Protesters jeer ex-IMF boss as bank card trial starts

  • People protest outside the National Court as they wait for the arrival of former Finance Minister and International Monetary Fund chief Rodrigo Rato in Madrid, Monday, Sept. 26, 2016. Rodrigo Rato, and 65 officials at Bankia SA and its founding savings bank Caja Madrid, face trial for alleged misuse of corporate credit cards issued by Spain's Bankia group and its predecessor savings bank, Caja Madrid between 2003 and 2012. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)

    People protest outside the National Court as they wait for the arrival of former Finance Minister and International Monetary Fund chief Rodrigo Rato in Madrid, Monday, Sept. 26, 2016. Rodrigo Rato, and 65 officials at Bankia SA and its founding savings bank Caja Madrid, face trial for alleged misuse of corporate credit cards issued by Spain's Bankia group and its predecessorĀ savings bank, Caja Madrid between 2003 and 2012. (AP Photo/Daniel Ochoa de Olza)  (The Associated Press)

  • Former Finance Minister and International Monetary Fund chief Rodrigo Rato arrives at the National Court in Madrid, Monday, Sept. 17, 2016. Rodrigo Rato, and 65 officials at Bankia SA and its founding savings bank Caja Madrid, face trial for alleged misuse of corporate credit cards issued by Spain's Bankia group and its predecessor savings bank, Caja Madrid between 2003 and 2012. (AP Photo)

    Former Finance Minister and International Monetary Fund chief Rodrigo Rato arrives at the National Court in Madrid, Monday, Sept. 17, 2016. Rodrigo Rato, and 65 officials at Bankia SA and its founding savings bank Caja Madrid, face trial for alleged misuse of corporate credit cards issued by Spain's Bankia group and its predecessorĀ savings bank, Caja Madrid between 2003 and 2012. (AP Photo)  (The Associated Press)

  • Former Finance Minister and International Monetary Fund chief Rodrigo Rato arrives at the National Court in Madrid, Monday, Sept. 26, 2016. Rodrigo Rato, and 65 officials at Bankia SA and its founding savings bank Caja Madrid, face trial for alleged misuse of corporate credit cards issued by Spain's Bankia group and its predecessor savings bank, Caja Madrid between 2003 and 2012. (AP Photo)

    Former Finance Minister and International Monetary Fund chief Rodrigo Rato arrives at the National Court in Madrid, Monday, Sept. 26, 2016. Rodrigo Rato, and 65 officials at Bankia SA and its founding savings bank Caja Madrid, face trial for alleged misuse of corporate credit cards issued by Spain's Bankia group and its predecessorĀ savings bank, Caja Madrid between 2003 and 2012. (AP Photo)  (The Associated Press)

Protesters shouted insults at Rodrigo Rato, the former head of the International Monetary Fund, as he and 64 others entered court for a trial over the alleged misuse of corporate credit cards at a Spanish bank.

Prosecutors are seeking a 4 ½ year jail term for Rato, 67, who headed Bankia group between 2010 and 2012.

The court says investigations indicate there was fraudulent administration and misappropriation of bank funds by the accused in the use of the "opaque" credit cards for irregular and undeclared expenses between 2003 and 2012.

The trial started Monday but questioning of the accused will begin Friday.

Rato was IMF chief from 2004 to 2007 and a leading figure in Spain's acting ruling Popular Party from 1996 to 2004.