It has been hanging over the high-profile and popular Triple A animal rescue charity in Marbella for over two years, but the ongoing legal investigation into a wide-range of possible irregularities in its running hasn't prevented the organisation from maintaining its care programme for abandoned animals, its close relationship with Marbella town hall or its fundraising activities.
On Monday, four of members of Triple A were called before an investigating judge to be formally interviewed over their part in managing the charity in 2016.
Two years ago Marbella was shocked when the Guardia Civil's environmental division, Seprona, raided the animal shelter run by the charity on the Ojén road. Four senior members were arrested, but subsequently released, and another 14 were placed under investigation.
Now, sources say, the long-running and complex investigation has reached a phase that is looking specifically at any possible financial irregularities and follows the delivery of a Guardia Civil report on the accounts of Triple A and paperwork around the adoption programme of animals in other countries.
As well as the four members of Triple A, the two former employees who originally made the complaint against Triple A were also called for interview by the judge.
The Triple A organisation has strenuously denied wrongdoing since the allegations surfaced and members of the association and members of the public who donate have rallied around it ensuring it continues to carry out its work.
The charity has had the support of Marbella town hall, both under the previous three-way coalition and the PP administration that replaced it last year. The council recently agreed to renew its agreement and give 30,000 euros a year to support the charity's work in collecting stray and unwanted animals from the town's streets and trying to find new homes for them.