Court suspends Catalan parliament committee investigating king’s ‘criminal activities’

Working group temporarily blocked after Constitutional Court accepts Spanish government appeal

Spain's king Felipe VI (center) during the inauguration ceremony for new judges (by Tània Tàpia)
Spain's king Felipe VI (center) during the inauguration ceremony for new judges (by Tània Tàpia) / ACN

ACN | Madrid

March 26, 2019 09:51 PM

A Catalan parliament committee that was to investigate the Spanish monarchy and its “criminal or irregular" activities was suspended on Tuesday after the Constitutional Court accepted an appeal by the central government in Madrid.

Three weeks ago, a majority of lawmakers in the chamber voted to create a commission tasked with investigating allegations that king Felipe VI pressured banks, large companies, and multinationals to transfer their headquarters outside Catalonia after the 2017 independence referendum.

The committee will be precautionarily suspended while Spain’s highest court decides whether it goes against the constitution.

According to the Spanish government, the parliament has "no powers" to investigate activities of people related to the crown. The same argument was used by the unionist parties to reject the committee.

Attempts to dissolve monarchy

The move to look into the potential alleged criminal activity of the crown came some months after the Catalan parliament tabled a motion to abolish the Spanish monarchy entirely following the role of the king in the independence bid.

Some weeks later, Madrid took the anti-monarchy motion to court despite counsel by its most senior advisory body not to do so.

The very same day, October 26, 2018, Barcelona local council passed a similar motion condemning the Spanish monarchy and asking for its abolition.