Spain Banco Santander CEO Alfredo Saenz Abad resigns, replaced by Javier Marín Romano

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The chief executive of Spain's Banco Santander SA, Alfredo Saenz Abad, has resigned in the latest twist of a long-running legal battle.

Saenz was named vice-chairman and chief executive of Santander 2002, according to a statement from the bank Monday. During that time the Santander Group has nearly quadrupled in size to become the eurozone's largest bank by market capitalization.

He will be replaced by the head of Santander's private banking and insurance arm, Javier Marin Romano.

Saenz's position as CEO had been in question since he was sentenced to six months in 2009 on charges of making false accusations while chairman of Banesto bank in the early 1990s. The sentence was reduced to three months and he was later pardoned by the government in 2011.