Intense week in Spanish Supreme Court begins
Judge Pablo Llarena, overseeing the case against pro-independence leaders, summons all those being prosecuted not currently in jail
An intense week begins in the Spanish Supreme Court. Judge Pablo Llarena, overseeing the case against pro-independence leaders, has summoned for Monday and Tuesday all those being prosecuted who are not currently in jail. He is to formally inform them of the crimes for which they are being taken to trial. None of them are being prosecuted for rebellion, which can carry a prison sentence of up to 30 years according to Spanish law—the reason being that all Catalan leaders accused of rebellion are already in jail or seeking refuge abroad.
On Monday, dismissed members of the Parliament are set to appear in order to testify over their role in Catalonia’s push for independence last year. These include Lluís Maria Corominas, Anna Simó, Ramona Barrufet, Josep Nuet, and Lluís Guinó. They are being prosecuted for disobedience.
On Tuesday, sacked ministers Meritxell Borràs and Carles Mundó, alongside ex-minister Santi Vila, will testify before the Supreme Court judge. They are being prosecuted for disobedience and misuse of funds. The former MP and current spokeswoman for the CUP candidacy, Mireia Boya, will also testify. She is being prosecuted for disobedience.
Aside from these summonses, the Appeals Chamber is also to hold a hearing on Wednesday in order to study the cases against the imprisonment of dismissed leaders Dolors Bassa, Josep Rull, Raül Romeva, Carme Forcadell, and Jordi Turull. They have all been in prison since March 23, but it is not the first time they have been behind bars for their roles in the independence roadmap.
Turull, who had already spent one month in prison, was arrested again this year before he was able to attend the second investiture debate to swear him in as president. He was released provisionally on December 4 last year, alongside Rull, Romeva, and Bassa, all of whom had spent a month in jail, having paid a bail of 100,000 euros. Forcadell only spent one night under lock and key, and was freed after a 150,000 euro bail was paid.
The jailed labour minister, Dolors Bassa, and sacked Foreign minister, Raül Romeva, asked not to be present for Wednesday’s hearing.
Other Catalan leaders in jail include Jordi Sànchez, deposed vice-president Oriol Junqueras, grassroots activist Jordi Cuixart, and deposed minister Joaquim Forn. Sànchez, a former activist, has been denied permission twice to attend an investiture debate in order to swear him in as president. Sànchez, Cuixart, Forn, and Junqueras have all been behind bars in preventive detention for more than half a year now.