Spain’s judiciary won’t lift judge Vidal’s penalty

The judge had announced appeal to High Court

In a plenary session, Spain’s General Council of the Judiciary (CGPJ) --the body that governs over Spanish judges and magistrates-- has decided not to lift the three year suspension imposed on judge Santiago Vidal for drafting a Catalan constitution and participating in separatist events.

Sources within the judiciary have informed EFE that last Friday the CGPJ notified Vidal that his request to have the penalty suspended had been dismissed, following his appeal to Spain’s High Court.

On February 26 a plenary session of the CGPJ agreed to suspend judge Vidal for a three year period as a penalty for having taken part in the writing of a draft Catalan constitution and in some pro-independence public events.

As soon as the judge learned about this, he announced that he would appeal against the suspension to the High Court and, in the meantime, he would contribute to “building a new country politically”, referring to an independent Catalonia. He added that he was considering running in the next elections as an independent member in a separatist candidacy.

The CGPJ’s decision was reached thanks to the votes of the conservative majority that supports Carlos Lesmes, the president of the CGPJ. The progressive minority voted against it and were joined by Enrique Lucas, the member appointed by the Basque Nationalist Party (EAJ-PNV). All in all, twelve votes against nine.