MADRID – A Spanish judge has ruled on Tuesday that five Catalan political leaders who were jailed pending trial for holding an illegal referendum to secede from the rest of the country be barred from holding public office.
Supreme Court judge Pablo Llarena informed Parliament of his ruling to suspend the five regional Catalan lawmakers who are currently in pre-trial detention, as well as the region’s ex-president Carles Puigdemont, who is currently in exile in Germany.
The measure affects regional lawmakers Oriol Junqueras, Jordi Turull, Josep Rull, Raül Romeva and Jordi Sanchez, as well as Puigdemont.
The judge ordered that the defendants be given 15 days to appear in a competent court before facing trial at the Supreme Court.
With regards those who fled into exile – Puigdemont, Antoni Comin, Lluis Puig, Meritxell Serret, Clara Ponsati, Marta Rovira and Anna Gabriel – Llarena declared them absconders who will be dealt with in another ruling at a future date.