Misc 16/07/2019

Jailed Councillor Forn denied leave to attend Barcelona City’s plenary session

Supreme Court presiding judge: decision is “equitable”

1 min
Joaquim Forn i Elsa Artadi durant el ple de constitució de l'Ajuntament de Barcelona.

BarcelonaSpain’s Supreme Court has turned down Councillor Joaquim Forn’s request to be allowed to attend the City’s plenary session this morning. The court, presided by Justice Manuel Marchena, has ruled that the measures imposed on the Catalan prisoner —held on remand awaiting a verdict— are “equitable”. Therefore —and unlike what happened a few weeks ago with the council’s inaugural session, which Forn was allowed to attend— this time the JxCat councillor will not be granted permission to leave the Sant Esteve Sesrovires correctional facility near Barcelona city. Furthermore, the Supreme Court argues that today’s session —where the new city government will put its organisational structure to a vote— is not of “an exceptional nature”, which is a legal requirement for an inmate to be granted leave.

Even though Barcelona Mayor Ada Colau had requested in writing that Forn be allowed to join the council’s plenary, the court has sided with the Prosecutor on the matter and proceeded to turn down the request.

ERC councillor Elisenda Alamany said the court’s decision was “incomprehensible” and “an embarrassment” that should prompt Ada Colau’s “city government” to discount one vote so as not to alter the results of the recent local polls”. The suggestion was made on Friday during the City’s Meeting of Spokespeople and was welcomed by Ada Colau’s Comuns group.

Speaking for Junts per Catalunya, on Monday Councillor Elsa Artadi insisted the the local government should not “alter the majority”. She added that “we trust Ada Colau’s government will not seize this opportunity to win the vote”.