The process of the century. That of Madrid is a test for democracy in Europe
Between June and September, the trial of the Catalan independence leaders will end with an historic verdict.
The prosecution, on behalf of the Spanish State, is calling for a very hard sentences for purely political crimes.
Attorney Arturo Salerni, a member of the International College of Defense for the accused, explains in a video and in a few lines what is at stake for a trial designed to give a sign of the state of democracy in Madrid and Europe.
"Criminal proceedings against twelve defendants, representatives of the Catalan independence movement and civil society in Catalonia, accused of the crimes of rebellion, sedition and embezzlement, are taking place at the Supreme Court in Madrid. These included the President and Vice-President of the Catalonian Parliament and the members of its Bureau at the time of the Catalan referendum.Nine of the defendants are in pre-trial detention in Madrid, away from their families and defendants, some since October 2017, others since March 2018. The trial is related to the demonstration that saw a million people parade in Barcelona in September 2017 in front of the Ministry of Economy, the referendum on Catalan independence of October 1, 2017 and the unilateral declaration of independence proclaimed by, at that time, President Puigdemont with the approval of the local Parliament.There are seven other people in other countries who are subject to criminal proceedings for the same reasons, but the European arrest warrants issued against them were not considered appropriate by the judges of the countries of exile.In the trial there is a public charge, represented by Fiscalia, the Public Prosecutor, an accusation represented by the Spanish State Attorney's Office and a private charge by the extreme right-wing Vox party.The Public Prosecutor requested a 25-year sentence for Oriol Junqueras of Esquerra Repubblicana, ex vice-president of the Generalitat of Catalonia, and a 15-year sentence for the other defendants. The defendants' statements, scheduled for June 11 and 12, will close the trial phase. The sentence is scheduled for the end of September."