AS SPAIN'S north-eastern region of Catalunya seeks to break away from the mother country in the eyes of the world's media, the fact that a chunk of national territory has already 'left' Spanish soil this...
'Little Nicholas' to earn €3,000 a day on Spain's 'VIP Big Brother'
SELF-STYLED government 'spy' Francisco Nicolás Gómez Iglesias – better known to the public as 'Little Nicholas' – will be appearing on the Spanish version of VIP Big Brother where he will earn €3,000 a day.
The 23-year-old student from Madrid, whose famous moments have included gatecrashing the coronation of King Felipe VI and being pictured shaking hands with the new monarch, will be among a series of minor celebrities living together under 24-hour CCTV surveillance in the house in Guadalix de la Sierra (Granada province) for the latest series of the show Gran Hermano VIP.
Claiming to have been a close comrade of top-ranking Spanish politicians and carrying out secret-service-style jobs on their behalf – which he says he was not paid for – the youngster, who made out he was a CNI agent, will be defended on the Telecinco programme by the police officer who was fired for acting as his chauffeur on a trip to Galicia.
Along with 'Little Nicholas' – who says he hates his public nickname and has always been known as 'Fran' – are Rosa Benito, Raquel Bollo, Laura Matamoros and Carmen López, the latter being a councillor thrown out of the centre-right independent political party Ciudadanos.
Typically, all Gran Hermano VIP contestants have been at the centre of some scandal or another – not necessarily criminal, but mostly personal and one which has led to their making headline news in gossip magazines.
'Little Nicholas' is still facing trial for 'usurping public functions' after the PP-led central government denied any links to the student, but his insistence and consistency, as well as text messages between the youngster and a leading businessman, have thrown doubt on the case.
Among his 'assignments', Fran Gómez says he was commissioned with helping to prove the innocence of the current King's sister, the Infanta Cristina, who is thought to be embroiled in a corruption, money-laundering and public fund embezzlement case affecting her husband, Iñaki Urdangarín.
Fran said in a magazine interview that he is convinced Cristina, who allegedly embraced him and thanked him profusely, is innocent, but he does not believe Urdangarín to be so.
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