Summoned pro-independence leader travels to Geneva
Former CUP MP Anna Gabriel, to testify on February 21, has relocated to Switzerland to prepare her defense and give an “international dimension” to case
Anna Gabriel, one of the more prominent former MPs and former spokesperson for the pro-independence far-left CUP party, has gone to Geneva, Switzerland. This relocation happened in “the last weeks,” allegedly with the objective of preparing her defense strategy as well as giving an “international dimension” to the general case being brought against Catalan officials accused of participating in the declaration of independence.
Gabriel, in fact, is one of the individuals investigated in the Spanish Supreme Court case for ties to the events leading up to the declaration of independence in the Catalan parliament. The former CUP MP is to testify in court on Wednesday, February 21, but it won’t be until the day before whether it will be made known whether she will attend the court session or not. Sources have stated that, currently, all options are open.
‘Threats of very high prison sentences’
Gabriel’s relocation was announced in a statement released by the CUP party on Saturday night, which also expressed that the crimes individuals are being accused of in the Spanish Supreme Court case - which include “threats of very high prison sentences” - weren’t actually conceived due to events that happened in Catalonia in the last few months.
The CUP’s statement further criticizes recent precautionary measures that the accused have been subject to. These include the high bail, bans on leaving Spain, and especially, ongoing pre-trial prison for Catalan pro-independence leaders. The CUP expressed, in the text, that it is necessary to “denounce” this situation, which is far from “the impartiality that should be guaranteed by judicial authorities.”
A larger case against pro-independence
Anna Gabriel is but the most recent in a series of names called to testify in Spanish courtrooms over the events that led up to the Catalan parliamentary plenary on October 27 of last year. The first ones to be put behind bars before standing trial were pro-independence civil society leaders Jordi Sànchez and Jordi Cuixart, who both remain in custody since mid-October. Then, came half of the deposed Catalan government around two weeks later, of which the vice president Oriol Junqueras and home affairs minister Joaquim Forn both remain in prison.
Gabriel is part of the larger case that the Spanish Supreme Court has been building against the pro-independence movement, in which 28 other individuals were also named. This includes one other member of the CUP party, Mireia Boya, who just days ago testified before the judge, but was however assigned no jail time before standing trial.