A German court has ruled that Catalan politician and former President Carles Puigdemont can be released on bail until a decision on his extradition to Spain is made. “The corruption charge against him is a potential basis for his return to Spain” – DW reports.
The state court in Schleswig-Holstein ruled on Thursday (5/04/2018) there was no reason to believe that Catalonia‘s former leader Carles Puigdemont risked persecution in Spain. It set bail at €75,000 ($92,000) while a decision was made on his possible extradition to Spain.
The court ruled that the main charge of ‘rebellion’ in the Spanish case against Puigdemont could not be used as the comparable German charge of treason specifies violence.
The court is to consider his extradition on the basis of misuse of public funds.
Prosecutors have asked a regional court in northern Germany to permit the extradition of the former Catalan leader to Spain. Puigdemont has been detained in Germany since March 25. The public prosecutor for Germany’s northern state of Schleswig-Holstein announced on Tuesday that it had requested the extradition of former Catalan President, Carles Puigdemont.
Puigdemont is being charged in Spain with rebellion and misuse of public funds, for his involvement in the Catalan independence referendum of October 2017. The former leader was living in self-imposed exile in Belgium and was in Finland on March 24, when Spain reactivated the European arrest warrant against him. Puigdemont was arrested when he entered Germany on March 25, as he was making his way back to Belgium.
The request came as a surprise to many European politicians , questioning how such a Medieval crime as a “rebellion” could enter the EU modern legal system.
A German court in Neumünster in Schleswig-Holstein will formally decide upon Carles Puigdemont’s identity on Monday (26.03.2018) afternoon after the Catalan independence leader was detained by police, while entering Germany on the way from Finland to Belgium, where he lives in an exile. The operation was reported as a ‘success’ of German and Spanish intelligence service cooperation.
The Court hearing will be a first legal step considering a possible extradition to the Kingdom of Spain.
On Friday last week, Madrid reactivated a European arrest warrant for Puigdemont for the crime of rebelion, which denotes rebellion against the state. The former President of self-proclaimed Catalan Republic faces up to 30 years in prison on the sedition charges, interpreting a referendum as a crime against Spanish Crown.
The European Commission as a guardian of the Treaties, and a guarantor of Fundamental Rights, declines to see the faults of Spanish Justice, exercising political judiciary.