WorldCatalan independence leader Carles Puigdemont arrested in Italy

Catalan independence leader Carles Puigdemont arrested in Italy

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Independence MEP and ex-Catalan president Carles Puigdemont, in exile in Belgium since 2017 after Catalonia’s attempted secession the same year, was arrested Thursday in Italy, his lawyer announced.

“President Puigdemont was arrested on his arrival in Sardinia, where he was going as an MEP,” said his lawyer, Gonzalo Boye, on Twitter, explaining that his arrest had taken place on the basis of a warrant for European judgment dated October 14, 2019. The Catalan leader was arrested in Alghero, his chief of staff, Josep Lluis Alay, confirmed on Twitter.

His extradition will be decided by an appeal court

“On his arrival at Alghero airport, he was arrested by the Italian border police. Tomorrow (Friday), the president will be presented to the judges of the Court of Appeal of Sassari, which is competent to decide on his release or his extradition ”, indicated Josep Lluis Alay.

The European Parliament lifted the parliamentary immunity of Carles Puigdemont and two other pro-independence MEPs on March 9, a measure that was confirmed on July 30 by the EU General Court.

Exiled in Belgium since the 2017 secession attempt in order to escape prosecution by Spanish justice, Carles Puigdemont did not benefit from the pardon granted at the end of June to the nine separatists imprisoned in Spain and the Spanish government of socialist Pedro Sánchez still wishes that he be tried in Spain. Carles Puigdemont is being prosecuted for “sedition” and is accused of “embezzlement of public funds”.



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