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Germany to extradite former premier Carles Puigdemont for misuse of public funds

Germany to extradite former premier Carles Puigdemont for misuse of public funds

A German court made a decision to allow the extradition of Catalan separatist leaderCarles Puigdemont to Spain, on a charge of misuse of public funds, a blow to the Spanish authorities' bid to bring him back to stand trial on the more serious charge of rebellion.

A German court ruled today that the former Catalan president Carles Puigdemont can be extradited to Spain to face corruption charges.

Puigdemont and several other former Catalan leaders have been accused by Spanish authorities of misusing funds by holding the independence referendum last October, which Madrid described as illegal.

A German state prosecutor says it will decide soon an extradition charge after the court deemed such action was permissible.

The ruling means that if the extradition goes ahead, Spain can only try Puigdemont on the charge of embezzlement and not for rebellion.

A spokeswoman confirmed: "The Higher Regional Court this morning has decided that an extradition for the alleged misappropriation of public funds is allowed".

"We have defeated the main lie given by the state".

Puigdemont has been in Germany after fleeing Spain for Belgium past year in the wake of the unilateral declaration of independence passed by the Catalan regional government.

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He and a number of his former colleagues are facing charges for their role in the pro-independence drive, which reached its peak previous year with an illegal referendum on secession from Spain and the aforementioned declaration.

Puigdemont has been on bail since April, after a court ruled he could not be extradited for rebellion, as that was not actionable under German law.

"The amount of violence required for the charge of high treason was not seen in the altercations in Spain".

According to German law, a person can be extradited only if charges against him/her are punishable in Germany.

"Every minute spent by our colleagues in prison is a minute of shame and injustice".

He was arrested in germany on March 28, with the spanish government accusing him of of rebelling and misappropriating public funds. "It will be in Europe where we win".

"This demonstrates once again the mistakes and lies behind a legal case which should never have been opened". Before he closed this part of the proceedings, he ordered Puigdemont, Oriol Junqueras, and the four other politicians who are being held in pre-trial custody (Raül Romeva, Jordi Turull, Josep Rull and Jordi Sànchez) to be suspended from their roles as deputies in the Catalan parliament.


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