“We persist”: Carme Forcadell, Dolors Bassa are allowed out of prison for the first time

They have been granted day-time leave on three weekdays to do voluntary work and look after a family member

“We persist”. This was Carme Forcadell’s first Twitter post after leaving the Mas d’Enric prison for the first time ever on Monday, as per Article 100.2 of the prison service’s rules and regulations. The former Speaker of the Catalan parliament was driven by her husband after the prison board green-lighted a regular three-day day-time leave last week so that Forcadell may do voluntary work and look after her elderly mother. Three hours later, former Catalan minister Dolors Bassa also left prison to look after a family member. Her sister and other relatives were waiting for her in a vehicle outside the facility.

Forcadell, who is a category 2 inmate, will be allowed to spend nine hours a day outside, whereas Bassa has been granted an eight-hour leave, including travel time. Both of them have been granted leave in accordance with Article 100.2 after Jordi Cuixart left the Lledoners prison last week to work in his company. Ex-interior minister Joaquim Forn and Jordi Sànchez, the ex-leader of the Catalan National Assembly (ANC) have also been granted leave. Forn will be allowed to spend 12.5 hours a day, five days a week, working in Mediapro’s legal department. This was confirmed on Catalunya Ràdio on Monday by Jaume Roures, Mediapro’s founder and general manager, who stated that Forn “will work in our legal department on matters to do with public law”.

Last week the Catalan justice minister, Ester Capella, said that all the Catalan political prisoners will “likely” benefit from Article 100.2. However, the Prosecutor’s Office stated first its position on this benefit last week, too: it asked the prison supervising court to revoke the benefit. Unlike in its statements regarding Cuixart and Sànchez’s three-day leave [granted earlier this year], this time the Prosecutor does not resort to considerations such as the convicts’ lack of regret, an argument that was dismissed by the supervising court when the case of Cuixart’s leave was examined.

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