Ricardo Salgado pictured in 2019 - Photo: MANUEL DE ALMEIDA/LUSA
Ricardo Salgado pictured in 2019 - Photo: MANUEL DE ALMEIDA/LUSA

Former BES banker – cited in multiple criminal cases – “gets lost in own home”

Ricardo Salgado’s wife gives intensely sad update

The wife of Portugal’s former BES bank chief Ricardo Salgado has told a court today that her husband “has no independence whatsoever” due to advancing Alzheimer’s disease, and that he gets lost in his own home.

Speaking as a witness in yet another session of EDP case trial at Lisbon’s Central Criminal Court, Maria João Salgado recalled her marriage of almost 60 years to the former chairman of the Espírito Santo Group (GES) to emphasise the deterioration in her husband’s state of health, pointing out that she has to accompany him in practically every day-to-day activity, writes Lusa.

“He’s ill, unfortunately his illness has progressed. Ricardo finds it difficult to do everything on his own… I have to be with him so he can go to the toilet. I sleep with him and I have to be careful because he gets up at night and doesn’t switch on the light. It pains me to say this about my husband, but he doesn’t have any independence these days,” she said, continuing: “He has already become lost at home.

According to his wife, Salgado often confuses his children with his grandchildren, and occasionally she has to resort to outside help.

I’m his carer and I always will be, but sometimes I need to rest”, she told the court. “I can’t sleep and I have used a carer at home. 

“I had a fantastic husband and today I have a big baby to look after,” she summarised.

Regarding Ricardo Salgado’s relationship with the other two defendants in this case – former minister of the economy, Manuel Pinho, and his wife, Alexandra Pinho – Maria João Salgado stressed that her husband spoke “very little about work” and that for this reason she does not have much information about what the relationship may have been.

Ricardo Salgado is on trial in this case for active corruption for an illegal act, active corruption and money laundering.

Manuel Pinho, who has been under house arrest since December 2021, is accused of passive corruption for an illegal act, passive corruption, money laundering and tax fraud, while his wife, Alexandra Pinho, is on trial for money laundering and tax fraud – in material co-authorship with her husband.

Ricardo Salgado equally faces other criminal prosecutions, again involving allegations of corruption, the largest of which is due to start on May 28. 

He is also a key suspect in the ‘revived’ Operation Marquês.

Mr Salgado’s defence team have argued that their client is not fit to stand trial/ defend himself, because of his advancing condition – and today his wife, answering questions from journalists outside the court, said the same, but “from the heart”.

Maria João Salgado said she did not presume to say what Justice should decide for her husband, but that she knows that he could not cope with being arrested, much less jailed.

Source material: LUSA/ TVIplayer.IOL