Former IMF boss in Spain court over alleged fraud

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MADRID (AP) — Former IMF managing director Rodrigo Rato has appeared before Spain's National Court to answer questions over his stewardship of Bankia, a major bank that had to be nationalized and bailed out by the state for €18 billion ($24 billion).

Rato was one of 33 former board members of Bankia SA named in a criminal probe by Judge Fernando Andreu.

Prosecutors have accused them of falsifying the bank's accounts when it went public a year ago, among other alleged offenses. The judge has not formally charged Rato with any crime.

Rato took over the bank — a merger of seven unlisted savings banks laden with toxic property investments — in 2010. In May, Bankia replaced him and requested a bailout.

He was greeted by protesters on entering the court Thursday.

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