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All jailed leaders to ask for freedom after German court decision

"Crime of rebellion does not exist, they made it up," say prisoners' defense

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13 July 2018 01:01 PM

by

ACN | Barcelona

All nine jailed pro-independence leaders will ask for their freedom as a reaction to Germany's decision on Carles Puigdemont.

The court in Schleswig-Holstein rejected the rebellion charges against him and only greenlighted an extradition for misuse of funds.

Nine politicians are in pre-trial jail after being prosecuted for rebellion –three of them, only face this crime.

After the Spanish Supreme Court judge Pablo Llarena, overseeing the case, stated a few days ago that the inquiry was over, other magistrates took over the proceedings.

In a joint press conference on Friday, the lawyers of all jailed leaders claimed that Germany's decision is one of the reasons for them to ask for their clients' freedom, but also the transferal of the case to other judges, and the nomination of a new Spanish general prosecutor.

"The crime of rebellion does not exist, they made it up, and manipulated events," said the attorney for grassroots pro-independence leader Jordi Cuixart, Marina Roig.

Different sentences would be "hard to explain"

Roig and her colleagues reminded listeners that as Germany rejected the rebellion charges, if Puigdemont were ultimately to be extradited only for misuse of funds, judges in Spain would only be able to try him for this crime.

This would lead to a situation in which, lawyers say, magistrates would find it "hard to explain" that some leaders are sentenced to 30 years in jail for rebellion, while the leader Puigdemont faced a maximum of 5 years if extradited.

 

  • "The crime of rebellion does not exist, they made it up, and manipulated events"

    Marina Roig · Grassroots pro-independence jailed leader Jordi Cuixart's lawyer

In fact, some media reports claim that the Spanish Supreme Court might be considering withdrawing the European arrest warrant against the former Catalan president.

"Opportunity" for prosecutor to change

The petition for the incarcerated leaders' freedom aims to end "unfair incarceration" as well as "discredit" Spanish judiciary, said Esquerra Republicana members' lawyer Andreu Van den Eynde.

For him, it is another "opportunity" for Spain's prosecutor to change their opinion and drop the rebellion charges.

He also felt confident that none of the prosecuted individuals will be convicted for the crime of rebellion.

Withdrawal of MPs suspension

The lawyers also announced that they will request that the suspension of six MPs accused of rebellion be withdrawn.

Earlier this week judge Llarena suspended as MPs the leaders accused or prosecuted for rebellion and with a detention order hanging over them even though they have not been tried yet.

This is possible under the Spanish Penal Code and it affects Carles Puigdemont, former vice president Oriol Junqueras and former ministers Josep Rull, Jordi Turull and Raül Romeva, along with Jordi Sànchez.

No negotiations with prosecution

Attorneys have also confirmed they are not negotiating with the prosecutor in order to get lower sentences as "they are guilty of no crime."

"We will make appeals until Strasbourg [European Court of Human Rights] even if the verdict is a ten-euro fine," said Van den Eynde.

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  • The lawyers of the jailed leaders in their joint press conference on July 13, 2018 (by Laura Fíguls)

  • The lawyers of the jailed leaders in their joint press conference on July 13, 2018 (by Laura Fíguls)