Carmen Lamela, a judge with Spain’s National Court, has once again summoned Josep Lluís Trapero, head of the Mossos d'Esquadra, Jordi Sànchez, President of the Catalan National Assembly (ANC), and Jordi Cuixart, President of Òmnium Cultural, to appear in court on Monday October 16th in the ongoing probe into an alleged crime of sedition.
All three had already testified as potential defendants on October 6th regarding events on September 20th, which the Guardia Civil views as a siege. They are accused of hampering the departure of officers that had been searching the HQ of Catalonia’s Ministry of Economy on Rambla de Catalunya. On October 6th they were released under their own recognizance because the prosecutor did not request injunctive measures while awaiting a new statement from the Guardia Civil. This report was delivered on Friday, and the accused had the right to review it. The report extended the investigation of the alleged crime of sedition into the events of October 1st.
Also called to appear is Mossos superintendent Teresa Laplana, who last Friday asked to testify by videoconference due to health problems.
Lamela summoned them to appear after an interlocutory decree denied a request by Cuixart and Sànchez to move the case to a Barcelona court, as they believed that Madrid’s National Court does not have jurisdiction to investigate alleged cases of sedition. Sedition is one of a group of crimes against public order that do not belong to this centralized judicial body, but rather to the territorial courts.
The decree responded that the actions being investigated sought to "illegally change the organization of the State", and as a result fall under the jurisdiction of the National Court. And it emphasises that the events that took place on September 20th and on October 1st were not "isolated", but rather they were a part of the roadmap towards independence, in which the ANC and Òmnium Cultural played an "essential" role.
According to the judge, "in the strategy as designed, their activity [that of Sànchez and Cuixart] after the approval of the laws of disconnection and the order calling the referendum, was essential for directing all of the pro-independence synergies in the same direction, which was to culminate in the mobilization of the entire Catalan society, in line with the pro-sovereignty argument".
This mobilization had to be "of such magnitude that it could drag the mass of undecided people towards the pro-independence interests. This effort would be led by pro-sovereignty organizations ANC and Òmnium, among other groups", according to the decree.
Added to this is the fact that the events were not isolated, "as those who question jurisdiction would have us believe, but rather lie within a complex strategy" in which Cuixart and Sànchez collaborated "to execute the road map designed to culminate with Catalan independence".
The judge believes that both "are part of a strategic committee with specific duties to carry out", as the Guardia Civil pointed out in the last report that they submitted to Lamela last week.
In that report, Spain’s Guardia Civil placed the leaders of these organizations in what it called a "strategic committee" for the declaration of independence, which would also include Catalan President Carles Puigdemont and Vice-president Oriol Junqueras.
In fact, the police report considers that Sànchez and Cuixart are "in decision-making positions" similar to that of the leaders of the Catalan government, while the Mossos Major, Josep Lluís Trapero, would be the executing arm of the pro-independence plan, according to the Guardia Civil and judge Lamela.