- A few notes on why the trial of the Catalan Parliament's speaker is so outrageous from the point of view of constitutional and criminal law.
- The Spanish Constitutional Court has repeatedly stated that parliamentary immunity serves the purpose of unrestricted political deliberation
- Both the institution and the individual members are said to be protected from any action that might impede the free expression of their will
- In particular, no member of any parliament shall be prosecuted, under any circumstance, for any of their opinions or votes. No exceptions.
- According to the Criminal Code it is an offence to try to prevent a member of parliament from freely expressing an opinion or casting a vote
- It is also a specific criminal offence for a judge to unduly prosecute, and for a police officer to unduly arrest, a member of parliament.
- There is no legal basis for the Constitutional Court or any other court to order a parliament not to discuss a specific matter o proposal.
- Until recently, the Constitutional Court maintained that political declarations or resolutions were not subject to constitutional review.
- Their views have changed dramatically in response to the events in Catalonia. So much that parliamentary immunity now has become meaningless.
- The Parlament's speaker is not prosecuted because of anything she did or said. She's prosecuted because they wanted her to block a debate.
- Even though the Constitutional Court's previous view was that the speaker could not block the discussion of proposals by reason of its content.
- It is also undisputed that the debate on Catalan independence was held in strict compliance of all Parliament regulations.
- Bottom line: the speaker of Parliament's actions can never be a criminal offence. Her prosecution might be, as it violates parlimentary immunity.
Tweets by Josep Costa on the Forcadell law suit
A set of thirteen devastating tweets by Josep Costa @josepcosta. The string starts here.