Spain Could Issue An Arrest Warrant For Ousted Catalan Leader

A Spanish government source says Puigdemont is now in Brussels

"The decision to hold them in custody is absolutely disproportionate as we consider the charges of rebellion and sedition lack any ground, no matter how much the prosecution insists on affirming it", lawyer Jaume Alonso-Cuevillas said.

The move follows last week's vote by the parliament of Catalonia to declare independence from Spain.

The court said the prosecutor proposed that the jailing of the eight may be avoided by paying bail.

A judge will have to decide whether the officials should go to jail pending an investigation that could potentially lead to a trial.

Sacked Catalan president Carles Puigdemont and four other ex-Cabinet members are in Belgium and ignored court summonses to appear on Thursday.

The hearing of nine of Puigdemont's ousted Cabinet members continued at the nearby National Court.

A spokesperson for Puigdemont said he would remain in Brussels with the other four ministers.




The ousted leader reacted to the events at Spain's National Court in Madrid as thousands of protesters took to the streets to protest at the jailings.

Forcadell is a former leader of the National Catalan Assembly, which has always been the driving civic group force behind the region's independence drive.

Carles Puigdemont's lawyer said his client would stay away from Spain while the political climate was "not good". This will likely trigger warrants for their arrest and petitions for their extradition.

Earlier, Spanish justice has summoned a number of former Catalan ministers and lawmakers to appear for questioning this week. In the text, the dismissed regional ministers are called "the legitimate government of Catalonia".

The group summoned includes his 13-member former Cabinet and six parliamentary board members.

According to Spain's chief prosecutor, the Catalan leaders were accused of rebellion - which carries a maximum 30-year jail term - as well as sedition and misuse of funds.

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