TWELVE lawyers and four treasurers have been arrested for helping the Basque terrorist organisation ETA.
Guardia Civil police officers have arrested people in Guipuzcoa, Vizcaya, Navarra and Madrid.
The arrests are mainly related with the lines of funding of ETA members who are currently imprisoned. Eight members of supporting groups had already been arrested in January 2014, including lawyer Arantza Zulueta.
Some of the detainees are being charged with crimes of membership of a terrorist organisation and money laundering, amongst others.
The arrested lawyers have been accused of controlling ETA members who are in prison, passing on instructions from the organisation for the prisoners to follow whilst serving their sentence.
The Ministry of the Interior claim the 12 arrested lawyers defrauded the Tax Office of more than €1 million between 2012 and 2013. The funds were allegedly obtained in payment for providing legal assistance to imprisoned ETA members.
They were also in charge of visiting the prisoners to deter them from showing signs of regret.
When the prisoners did not follow instructions, their funding would be withdrawn, according to the government.