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Belgiam to decide on extradition of Catalan leader in 10 days

IANS  |  Brussels 

A Belgian judge will decide on Decemebr 14 if Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont and four councilors, who are living in exile here, are to be extradited.

According to Xinhua, the magistrate has heard the legal arguments from both sides, but will not make any decisions within 10 days, the lawyers of the five Spanish leaders announced on Monday at the end of the hearing at the Brussels Palace of Justice.

The Brussels prosecutor's office again demanded on Monday that the five warrants be enforced.

The defense has argued that the offenses against the defendants are not punishable in Belgium and that there is a danger that their human rights would be violated in Spain.

The five warrants were issued on November 3 involving charges of "rebellion, sedition, embezzlement of public funds, and disobedience to authority," which are liable to up to 30 years imprisonment in Spain.

The Brussels Public Prosecutor's Office requested the European arrest warrants issued by Spain against former Catalan President Puigdemont and his four former councilors be carried out on Nov. 17.

These events took place in the aftermath of an independence referendum held in Catalonia on October 1 that the Spanish authorities declared illegal.

The prosecution, as well as those being prosecuted, have the right to appeal the final decision.

All five of the accused had presented themselves on November 5 to the federal judicial police in Brussels and had been deprived of their liberty. The investigating judge had decided to place them under house arrest.

--IANS

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, December 05 2017. 06:58 IST
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