The lawyer Gonzalo Boye, acting on behalf of the rapper Valtònyc —real name Josep Miquel Arenas— informed the ACN [Agència Catalana de Notícies] that the European Court of Human Rights has agreed to hear his case. Court sources have not confirmed Boye’s claim, though they stated that agreeing to consider a case does not imply it has been formally accepted. Valtònyc filed his appeal with the Strasbourg-based court last October, alleging that Spain had violated his freedom of expression by sentencing him to three and a half years in prison for the crimes of glorifying terrorism, insulting the Crown and making threats through his lyrics.
Valtònyc is currently living in Brussels, where he fled in order to evade prison and where he is still subject to a European Arrest Warrant [EAW] as he awaits the Belgian court’s final ruling on his extradition. The EAW is bogged down in the Ghent Court of Appeal, pending a ruling on a preliminary question it sent to the Court of Justice of the European Union enquiring how it should apply Spanish law regarding the glorification of terrorism, while simultaneously deciding on how to proceed with the arrest warrant.