Former CUP MP Anna Gabriel turns herself in to the Supreme Court four years after fleeing in Switzerland | Catalonia

Ana Gabriel, former deputy of CUP in the Catalan Parliament who was tried for disobedience in because of to treat, This Tuesday voluntarily before the Supreme Court. Judge Pablo Larina released her while she was waiting to set a day for her statement. Gabriel fled to Switzerland in February 2018 after being called to testify in the O-1 investigation. Finally, she was only tried for the offense of disobedience – which does not mean a prison sentence – and was announced in absentia in July of the same year.

No European or international arrest warrant was ever issued for Gabriel because the crime against him is not punishable by imprisonment. If convicted, he will face a fine and a penalty of disqualification (maximum two years) for holding a public office or position. The former leader of Candidatures d’Unitat Popular (CUP) now holds no public office and serves as a union member in Switzerland.

The Supreme Court has already issued a national arrest warrant due to the impossibility of locating her as a result of the referendum case on 1 October 2017 and the subsequent unilateral declaration of independence (DUI). After his voluntary surrender on Tuesday to resolve his personal situation, Judge Pablo Larina agreed to release him. Larina rescinded the arrest warrant and placed it “in absentia” while she was waiting for a day to take her statement. In the car, the judge reminds the former deputy of her obligation to appear “as many times as she is required to.”

You will continue in Switzerland

“After four and a half years of exile, there is a necessary procedural step to restore freedom of movement that I should never have lost, neither I nor anyone else,” the former MP said in a statement released by her support group. Edit Anna Gabriel. The activist asserts that the step she took responds to the “general political and judicial context” (the government granted amnesty to prisoners to treat The political climate in relation to Catalonia calmed down), but also due to a “chain of personal circumstances”, which he did not mention in detail.

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However, Gabriel will remain in Switzerland for the time being as he has commitments. Indeed, on the same Tuesday, she returned to the country to attend her “responsibility as Secretary-General of UNIA”, in the canton of Geneva, according to a note issued by her support group. Gabriel was elected last November as president of this federation, the first of its kind in Switzerland, with more than 200,000 members.

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In June 2018, Gabriel was granted a residence permit in Switzerland for five years. Then his mother Maribel Sabatier in an interview explained the reasons for the escape. “I don’t want to spend a day of my life in a prison with some trace of Francoist that wants to humiliate you, that wants to make you say what you don’t feel, and I don’t want to go through that bad experience,” Gabriel explained, according to his mother. She has a law degree – she was a university professor – and a social teacherIt embodies the hard line of anti-capitalist independence.

Thus, Gabriel followed in the footsteps of former Agriculture Minister Meritxel Seret, who in March 2021 also took the step of voluntarily appearing before the Supreme Court. Serret fled to Belgium in the wake previous president Carlos Puigdemont. Judge Larina also released her with a duty to appear when called to testify.

Asked about Gabriel’s appearance, government spokeswoman Patricia Playa said “he is a victim of 1-O oppression” and that if he decided to return to Catalonia, “he would be welcomed”. Blaga added that the executive branch was not aware that he had decided to take the step. “It came in a clandestine way, and the government had no knowledge.”

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