€13,500 fine but no disqualification for MP who rejected to answer far-right prosecutors in trial

Eulàlia Reguant declined Vox's cross-examination as a witness in 2017 referendum proceedings in Supreme Court

CUP MP Eulàlia Reguant entering Supreme Court during her trial on September 29, 2022
CUP MP Eulàlia Reguant entering Supreme Court during her trial on September 29, 2022 / Andrea Zamorano
Catalan News

Catalan News | @catalannews | Madrid

October 7, 2022 01:58 PM

October 7, 2022 02:21 PM

Far-left CUP MP Eulàlia Reguant was fined €13,500 for refusing to answer questions from the far-right Vox party during the trial of the 2017 independence referendum organizers. 

The Supreme Court announced its decision on Friday, ruling out barring her from public office as had been proposed by the public prosecutor, meaning that she will keep her seat in the Catalan parliament.

Reguant was called in as a witness in the referendum organizers' trial, which was also held in the Supreme Court, in 2019, and declined to participate in the cross-examination of Vox, which was acting as a private prosecutor in the proceedings.

The public prosecutor had also requested a 4-month jail sentence, but instead, she will have to pay a daily €50 fine for nine months.

Magistrates found her guilty of serious disobedience of authority, arguing that this behavior was "evident, unambiguous, clear and obvious."

Indeed, in February 2019, while testifying in the trial that ended with nine leaders convicted to 9 to 13 years in jail for sedition, she stated: "Before the far right, a sexist and xenophobic party, I won't respond to their questions, and will face the consequences."

The first consequence was a €2,500 fine, which she received a few weeks after the events, but she also faced criminal charges, which in the end led to another fine.

Reguant in trial: 'Legitimizing those against gender equality is against my principles'

She was tried last week, and Reguant  said that "accepting the presence of those who deny fundamental rights in court would have meant opening the door to injustice."

"Legitimizing those who stand for policies against gender equality is against my principles and values."

For her, answering Vox would have meant going against her own "dignity" and this would have led to "moral damage."

The CUP MP's lawyer, Daniel Amelang, said that the proposed sentence by the public prosecutor is "disproportionate."

"It was an exercise of freedom of speech and conscience that does not warrant a criminal proceeding."