‘A jail without bars’ – one year on, activist remains confined to Catalan town
Tamara Carrasco can’t leave Viladecans despite dismissal of initial charges of terrorism and rebellion from pro-independence protests
One year on, pro-independence activist Tamara Carrasco remains confined to the Catalan town of Viladecans after initial charges of terrorism and rebellion were dismissed over lack of evidence.
"It’s like a jail without bars,” she said in an interview with the Catalan News Agency.
A rare precautionary measure—which is more often applied in cases of gender violence—the restriction on Carrasco’s freedom of movement will be in place at least until a new court assumes her case.
Carrasco was arrested by Spanish police on April 10, 2018. She was accused of instructing a local branch of the activism group Committees in Defense of the Republic (CDR) to protest, by cutting roads and blocking toll booths.
“As I remember it, it was surreal: I woke up, opened the door and saw 12 armed people accusing me of terrorism"
Tamara Carrasco · Pro-independence activist
“As I remember it, it was surreal: I woke up, opened the door and saw 12 armed people accusing me of terrorism,” she recalls.
On paper, the confinement admits temporary allowances to leave the town. Yet, Carrasco says such permissions are never granted to her: “My mother had an accident. She broke her leg and suffered several injuries. I asked for permission to visit her, but it was denied.”
Adrià Carrasco, another member of the CDR originally charged with the same accusations, managed to escape police and traveled to Belgium. He rules out returning to Catalonia until the investigation is closed.
“What they’ve done to me and Adrià is a punishment,” says Carrasco, who sees herself as the “victim of a plot."
Case at a standstill
Currently, the case is at a standstill. After Spain’s National Court ruled out initial charges of terrorism and rebellion, Catalan courts are quarreling over their jurisdiction to handle the investigation.
“Judges don’t want to bell the cat,” says Carrasco. According to her, whoever handles the case will be forced to dismiss all charges over lack of evidence, thus showing that Carrasco’s arrest was ill-founded from the beginning.