From terrorism to inciting public disorder: Catalan activist faces trial after initial charges dropped
Tamara Carrasco stands accused of instigating protests as a member of pro-independence CDR groups
Originally detained under terrorism and rebellion charges in April 2018, and subsequently confined for over a year in her hometown of Viladecans in the outskirts of Barcelona, the trial of Catalan independence activist Tamara Carrasco is due to start on Monday although her initial terrorism charges have been dropped.
After years of a judicial back and forth between jurisdictions, Carrasco finally faces trial at a local court in Barcelona, accused of inciting public disorder in the wake of the 2017 independence push, and faces a 7-month prison sentence as requested by the public prosecutor, falling short of the 2-year threshold to enter jail.
"It was surreal: I woke up, opened the door and saw 12 armed people accusing me of terrorism"
Tamara Carrasco · Pro-independence activist
When she was first detained, police used a voice message sent to a Whatsapp group to accuse her of instructing a local branch of the Committees in Defense of the Republic, a decentralized network of protest groups created in the run-up to the 2017 referendum which has been responsible for actions including blocking off roads and toll booths.
“As I remember it, it was surreal: I woke up, opened the door and saw 12 armed people accusing me of terrorism,” she recalled in an interview with Catalan News.
'A jail without bars'
While awaiting trial, Carrasco was ordered to remain confined to her hometown, a rare precautionary measure which is more often applied to perpetrators of gender-based violence. "It’s like a jail without bars," said Carrasco.
More than a year later, in May 2019, a local court lifted Carrasco’s confinement, calling it "disproportionate".