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Ticinese politician, Bignasca, has debts of SFr67 million

The head of canton Ticino's right-wing political party, Guiliano Bignasca, has a mountain of debts, totalling SFr67 million. The chief of the Lega dei Ticinesi made no secret of his financial situation, when he said most of his debts were in bank loans.

The head of canton Ticino's right-wing political party, Guiliano Bignasca, has a mountain of debts, totalling SFr67 million. The chief of the Lega dei Ticinesi made no secret of his financial situation, when he told the Swiss press most of his debts were due to bank loans.

Bignasca's SFr67 million mountain of debts is made up of SFr63 million in unpaid bank loans and the rest in money owed to the inland revenue.

The colourful and controversial politician, who is also one of the biggest entrepreneurs and property tycoons in canton Ticino, told the "Sonntagszeitung" newspaper the crisis in the property market during the 1990s was to blame for his debts.

However, Bignasca was confident his profits from letting property which amount to around SFr5.5 million a year would help him.

The town of Lugano owes Bignasca tax rebate arrears which are due to be paid out soon. But, Bignasca said, "If the banks let me down, then I'm finished."

It is not the first time Bignasca, who recently won a seat in Lugano's council, has made the headlines for the wrong reasons. In 1997, he was sentenced to four and a half months in prison for cocaine abuse and slander.

swissinfo with agencies

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