Last six arrested officials walk free

Detainees released after refusing to testify, while prosecutor files sedition suit against demonstrators

There is no let up in the Spanish authorities’ legal pursuit of pro-independence leaders. No sooner had the last six officials arrested on Wednesday been released by a Barcelona judge, than the state prosecutor filed a sedition lawsuit for organizing the protests on the same day the arrests took place. The suit singles out ANC president, Jordi Sánchez, and Òmnium Cultural president, Jordi Cuixart, while also yesterday the government warned that the central government is looking into taking over control of the Catalan police, the Mossos d’Esquadra.

With the release of the six officials yesterday, all 14 of those arrested during the Spanish police raids on Wednesday are now free, including the economy ministry heads, Josep Maria Jové and Lluís Salvadó. Nevertheless, all of the officials detained were charged with misuse of public funds, contempt, and perversion of justice, with some also charged with sedition, which comes with prison sentences of up to 15 years.

The six arrested officials released yesterday exercised their right to remain silent and did not answer any questions put to them either by the judge or the prosecutor. Although released they will have to report to the judge on a weekly basis. The officials affected are Rosa Maria Rodríguez Curto, director of T-Systems services, Pep Masoliver, director of information for the foundation, the head of Strategy and Innovation at the Catalan government’s Centre of Telecommunications and Information Technology, Josuè Sallent, and employee of the Consorci d’Administració Oberta, Juan Manuel Gómez.

As part of the case against them, the judge is investigating whether the Catalan government has spent the 6.2 million euros set aside in the budget for preparing the referendum suspended by the Constitutional Court.

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