On December 14, the competent Belgian court postponed its decision on extradition of four members of the Catalan President and Cabinet of Carles Puigdemont, who had been expelled in Belgium, the lawyer of the former Catalan president on Monday in Brussels.
Paul Bekaert said that at Monday’s hearing, the prosecution requested the execution of a European arrest warrant issued by the Spanish authorities. In this connection, he stated that regardless of the expected Belgian court ruling on 14 December, everything will be done to ensure that his defenders remain in Belgium at least until the 21st December repeated Catalonian elections.
He considered that members of the Catalan government could not be punished in Belgium, because the Spanish accusations against them were unfounded. However, in the event of their release, there is a risk of violation of fundamental rights in Spain.
Puigdemon earlier stated that he was willing to cooperate with the Spanish authorities, but lost confidence in Spanish justice, which he believed was “politicized”.
The leadership of Catalonia unilaterally proclaimed Catalonia’s independence after the unconstitutional nomination at the beginning of October. The Spanish authorities subsequently issued a European arrest warrant against Puigdemon and four of its counterparts who traveled to Brussels in late October after being dismissed by the Madrid government as extraordinary measures and issuing early local elections in Catalonia.
After issuing a European Arrest Warrant, Belgium has three months to conduct the proceedings.
According to the rules of the European Arrest Warrant, the State of Arrival shall be obliged to return the person to the Member State where the arrest warrant was issued within 60 days after the arrest. If the party agrees to the transfer, the transfer decision must be taken within ten days. Under EU law, a Member State may, inter alia, refuse to transfer the requested person if he has been convicted for the same offense, is competent in the case concerned, is prosecuted in the Member State of enforcement or in the event of termination or amnesty.
Source: MTI / Image: erdely.ma /