Spanish Government challenges referendum budget in the court

March 31, 2017 03:35 PM | ACN

The Catalan budget for 2017, which includes an allocation of €5.8 million to carry out the referendum on independence which the Government committed to call next September, has been taken before the court. The Parliament’s legal services already warned on the day the bill was passed that by doing so the chamber could be ignoring the TC. Indeed, the Spanish body called to impede or block any initiative emerged from the pro-independence declaration of the 9-N, which was already suspended.  The pro-independence parties in the Parliament, governing cross-party ‘Junts Pel Sí’ and radical left CUP backed the bill, which besides considering the referendum, it allocates €17.8 billion to social expenditure. The main parties in the opposition, Spanish Unionist Ciutadans, Catalan People’s Party (PP) and Catalan Socialist Party (PSC) announced this Friday that they will join the Spanish Government’s initiative and present an appeal to the bill.

Catalan leaders sentenced over independence vote say fundamental rights violated

March 21, 2017 02:22 PM | ACN

The sentences regarding the November 9th, 2014 vote on independence, including hefty fines and a ban from public office of the main political leaders responsible, may violate fundamental rights say the lawyers of former Catalan President, Artur Mas, Catalan VP Joana Ortega and former Catalan Minister for Education, Irene Rigau. They have appealed to Catalonia’s Supreme Court (TSJC). Last week, Mas was sentenced to a two-year ban from holding public office and fined €36,500 for allowing the non-binding consultation to take place in 2014. Ortega and Rigau were also banned from taking public office for a period of 1 year and 9 months and 1 year and 6 months and fined €30,000 and €24,000, respectively.

Spanish Court suspends Parliament’s plan for pro-independence referendum

December 14, 2016 02:02 PM | ACN

The Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) has temporarily suspended the proposal approved by governing cross-party list ‘Junts Pel Sí’ and radical left pro-independence CUP to call a referendum in Catalonia. The magistrates admitted this Wednesday to proceed with the appeal presented by the Spanish executive in October, which calls for the suspension of the pro-independence group’s proposal approved in the Parliament and considers it to have emerged from the previously suspended declaration to start launching the pro-independence roadmap. The TC judges have also warned Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont and Parliament’s President, Carme Forcadell that they must avoid any initiative aimed at contravening this suspension. The TC decision arrives only two days before Forcadell is due to testify before the Court for allegedly violating the Spanish Constitution when allowing the pro-independence debate to take place in the Catalan Chamber, last July. 

Spanish Constitutional Court has 45 pending appeals relating to Catalonia

November 22, 2016 02:29 PM | ACN

“The Spanish Government is maintaining its judicial offensive against the Catalan Government and no one is sitting at the table but the Government of Catalonia”, reported the Catalan Government spokeswoman, Neus Munté, this Tuesday. The statement comes after Catalonia’s Supreme Court (TSJC) notified the president of the Parliament, Carme Forcadell, that she will have to testify on the 16th of December for allowing the pro-independence roadmap to be put in vote on the 27th of July. Forcadell's case and the prosecution of the organisers of the 9-N symbolic vote held in 2014 are not an exception, but rather an example of the monopolisation of the Catalan question in the complaints issued by the Spanish Government to the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC). According to the data offered by Munté, the TC has 18 pending appeals issued by the Spanish executive against Catalan laws and 27 more issued by the Catalan Government for conflicts of competences.

Supreme Court to proceed with case against Parliament’s President for disobedience

November 16, 2016 06:26 PM | ACN

The case against Parliament’s President, Carme Forcadell, for allegedly disobeying and perverting the course of justice by allowing the pro-independence roadmap to be put to vote on the 27th of July will proceed. Catalonia’s Supreme Court (TSJC) refused this Wednesday the appeal presented by the Parliament and emphasised that the crimes Forcadell are accused of are not related to “the public expression of thoughts or ideas” but to “disobeying” a ruling from the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC), which it defined as “a key piece in the architecture of democratic and advanced states”. The document, written by Judge Maria Eugènia Alegret, also urges the Parliament to present documentation to the inquiry in order to “prove that the facts described in the lawsuit constitute a crime” and also to help “the defence of the accused”. 

Pro-independence CUP accuses Spanish Constitutional Court of promoting a “coup d’état”

August 8, 2016 06:46 PM | ACN

The current situation of judicialisation of politics in Catalonia and the obstacles that the Spanish executive puts in the way of the pro-independence roadmap “are similar”to previous episodes “of military coup d’états”in Spain, stated CUP MP, Anna Gabriel. The representative of the radical left pro-independence party told the CNA that the Catalan institutions haven’t been “threatened by criminal means”so much for “many years”and she predicted that such threats could be increased “if the pro-independence process continues to move forward”. Thus, Gabriel considered that it would be “ridiculous”to appeal the Spanish Constitutional Court’s decision to suspend the pro-independence roadmap, ratified last week by the Parliament, since “those who take part in the coup d’état don’t come to reason”. 

Spanish Constitutional Court suspends pro-independence roadmap

August 1, 2016 02:47 PM | ACN

The magistrates of the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) held this Monday an emergency meeting and unanimously agreed to accept the appeal presented by Spain’s executive, which urged to suspend Catalonia’s pro-independence roadmap, the next steps of which were approved last week by the Parliament. By the end of August the TC will decide if it will apply prison charges to the Parliament’s President, Carme Forcadell. The 72 pro-independence MPs in the Catalan Chamber and the Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont, have expressed their solidarity with Forcadell and insisted that the decision to pass the conclusions of the Committee to Study the Constitutive Process was not hers but the democratic and majoritarian will of Catalans. 

TC partially suspends Catalonia’s state structures

July 7, 2016 06:33 PM | ACN

The Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) has unanimously suspended some precepts of the law on fiscal measures which foresees the development of so-called state structures in Catalonia. In particular, the magistrates have considered unconstitutional the plan for the creation of the Catalan Tax Agency, the catalogue of strategic infrastructures and the plans for the energy and railway sectors, amongst others. The suspension, which has now been confirmed, affects the same articles which were temporarily annulled in June 2015 when the Spanish Government asked for legal action against Catalonia’s plans for the creation of state structures. Later, in November 2015, the TC accepted the appeal presented by the Spanish executive to stop the reform of Catalonia’s Tax Agency.


New Spanish Constitutional Court setback for pro-independence declaration

June 7, 2016 02:51 PM | ACN

Spain’s Constitutional Court (TC) has approved the appeals presented by Spanish Unionist ‘Ciutadans’, the Catalan Socialist Party (PSC) and the Conservative Catalan People’s Party (PPC) in November in relation to the pro-independence declaration approved by the Parliament. The three parties presented writs of protection and considered that the pro-independence forces’ agreed declaration to start building a new country violated citizens’ right of participation and that of the parliamentary representatives, as the Spokesperson Bureau was convened before PPC constituted themselves as a parliamentary group. This Tuesday, the magistrates in the TC partially upheld the appeals. The content of the pro-independence forces’ agreed declaration was already suspended by the TC in December, and declared it unconstitutional and, therefore, invalid. 

Spanish Court suspends Catalan law’s articles oriented toward avoiding evictions

May 31, 2016 03:27 PM | ACN

The appeal presented in April by Spain’s executive calling for the suspension of some articles of the Catalan law against energy poverty has been accepted by the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC). In particular, the magistrates have cautionarily suspended 8 articles mainly oriented toward avoiding evictions. According to the TC, the suspension is automatic and therefore the magistrates “couldn’t do anything” but accept the Spanish government’s appeal. The Catalan Government’s Spokeswoman, Neus Munté, stated that this suspension was “to be expected”. The TC’s decision comes two days after thousands of people rallied in Barcelona to protest over the Spanish court’s measures against numerous laws passed by the Catalan Parliament. 

Spain takes the committee to study the constitutive process of a potential Catalan Republic before the court

March 3, 2016 06:44 PM | ACN

The Spanish Constitutional Court (TC) accepted the appeal presented by the Spanish executive against the Parliament’s committee to study the constitutive process of a potential Catalan Republic. According to current Spanish vice president, Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría, the Catalan Government’s first aim was to make it “a legislative” committee but they decided to turn it into a “study committee” in view of its possible unconstitutionality. Furthermore, Spain’s state attorney believes that by launching this committee the Parliament would not be fulfilling the TC sentence which suspended the pro-independence proposal approved in the Catalan chamber on the 9th of November.

Spain to take the Catalan Ministry for Foreign Affairs before the court

January 22, 2016 06:58 PM | ACN

The Spanish government’s acting vice president Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría announced that the competences of the new Catalan Ministry for Foreign Affairs will be taken before the court. The commission to study the constitutive process of a potential Catalan Republic, which was approved on Thursday during the new government’s first plenary session, will also be appealed. Spain’s executive believes that both actions violate competences of the Spanish government. On the other hand, Spain’s executive will not impugn new Catalan President Carles Puigdemont’s taking office, during which Puigdemont didn’t mention Spain’s King nor the Spanish Constitution. 

Parliament to appeal the suspension of independence declaration

November 24, 2015 07:40 PM | ACN / Sara Prim

The Catalan chamber will present a plea against the Spanish Constitutional Court (TC)'s suspension of the independence declaration. The Parliament's Bureau approved this on Tuesday, with the support of pro-independence 'Junts Pel Sí' and alternative left coalition 'Cataluna Sí que es Pot's 5 members of the Bureau. The Bureau’s two Anti-Catalan nationalism representatives, from Ciutadans and the Catalan Socialist Party (PSC), voted against the proposal. "We don't understand that a jurisdictional body could stop democracy" stated Parliament's first vice-president and 'Junts Pel Sí' MP, Lluís Corominas. According to Ciutadans' representative in the Parliament's Bureau, José María Espejo, the declaration of independence "did have an unconstitutional component" as it stated that "only those laws approved by the Catalan Parliament would be obeyed".