Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

ENCORE!

The Joubran Trio: 'We hope one day to be free of our identity'

Read more

FOCUS

Fields of despair: Suicide plagues French farmers

Read more

IN THE PRESS

Was Tanzanian billionaire's kidnapping 'a political warning'?

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

OAS chief urges ICC to open formal probe into Venezuela crimes

Read more

PERSPECTIVE

Down syndrome in France: 'People are ready for inclusion, institutions must catch up'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Who is still going to Saudi Arabia's investment conference?

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Cameroon's Paul Biya wins seventh term in poll marred by low turnout

Read more

#THE 51%

The Gender Divide: Record number of women running in US midterms

Read more

THE DEBATE

The Nativist: Trump warns of migrant 'emergency' ahead of midterms

Read more

Europe

German court says Catalan ex-leader Puigdemont can be extradited to Spain

© Tobias Schwarz, AFP | Catalonia’s ousted leader Carles Puigdemont attends a press conference in Berlin on May 15, 2018.

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2018-07-13

A German court ruled on Thursday that former Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont could be extradited to Spain for alleged misuse of public funds, but it rejected a request to send him back to answer a more serious charge of rebellion.

Puigdemont fled to Brussels after Spanish courts issued a warrant for his arrest over his role in Catalonia’s declaration of independence last October. This was illegal under Spain’s constitution, according to Spanish law.

A source in Puigdemont’s legal team said the former Catalan leader would appeal a decision to extradite him from Germany on any charge. If extradited for misuse of funds, Puigdemont could not be tried for rebellion in Spain.

A spokeswoman for the Schleswig Holstein court said: “The court decided this morning that an extradition due to the accusation of misuse of public funds is permissible.”

Responding to the court decision, German prosecutors said they would soon decide whether to authorise the extradition of Puigdemont, who was arrested in March while travelling through Germany.

The German court decision comes after Spain’s new Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez met with the new pro-independence Catalan leader Quim Torra on Tuesday in a move aimed at easing tensions between Barcelona and Madrid.

In response to the ruling, Sanchez said he respected judicial rulings on Puigdemont, whether it was from Germany, Belgium or Spain, but he said the former leader would need to be tried in Spain for his part in the secession push.

The charge of misuse of public funds carries a maximum prison sentence of eight years while the more serious charge of rebellion, faced by many of Puigdemont’s former cabinet, could put him in prison for up to 30 years.

“We have defeated the main lie given by the state. German justice denies that the Oct. 1 referendum was rebellion,” Puigdemont tweeted following the court decision.

He also called the imprisonment of six former cabinet members, two NGO leaders and the previous head of the Catalan parliament, serving time while awaiting trial, “unjust” and an “embarrassment.”

(REUTERS)

Date created : 2018-07-12

  • SPAIN

    New Catalan president Torra names jailed, exiled leaders to regional government

    Read more

  • SPAIN

    Puigdemont rejects new appointment as Catalan leader, proposes successor

    Read more

  • GERMANY-SPAIN

    Ex-Catalan leader calls for dialogue with Spain after release from German jail

    Read more

COMMENT(S)