Oriol Junqueras and the other nine former Esquerra Republicana charges indicted by the Court of Auditors have asked that the process opened against them be suspended, for violating the fundamental right to an impartial judge, and that the matter be raised to the Constitutional Court.
According to ERC sources, the defense of the party's ex-charges from whom 3.4 million euros are required for the expenses of the procés have presented their brief answering the lawsuit, in which they ask that it be dismissed in its entirety.
In addition to Junqueras, other members of the party are charged for alleged accounting responsibility in the procés: former ministers Raül Romeva and Dolors Bassa, in addition to former charges Aleix Villatoro, Josep Ginesta, Jaume Mestre, Sergi Marcén, Erik Hauck, Maria Kapretz and Ewa Cylwik .
Specifically, the defendants argue that in the case there has been a violation of the fundamental right to an impartial judge due to the very composition of the Court of Accounts, whose members are elected in a process in which the Prosecutor's Office has a voice and a vote.
For this reason, the former ERC charges request that the procedure be suspended due to the alleged diversion in the expenses of the procés and that a question of constitutionality be raised to the Constitutional Court.
The defense also asks for a criminal prejudiciality to be declared and a conflict of jurisdiction to be raised with the investigating court number 13 of Barcelona, which has prosecuted a forty former charges of the Government of Carles Puigdemont for the organization of the 1-O, among them some of those prosecuted in the Court of Auditors.
In parallel, the investigating court number 18 of Barcelona maintains another case open as a result of a complaint from the Anti-Corruption Prosecutor's Office -in which the former Minister of Foreign Affairs Raül Romeva is charged- for the diversion of nearly one million euros intended for the procés through arbitrary awards or by hand.
In this sense, the ERC charges request the Court of Auditors to suspend the procedure for the expenses of the procés while waiting for the related open criminal cases to end.
On the other hand, ERC has celebrated the change of criteria of the Prosecutor's Office, which yesterday supported returning to the Republican party the bail that it deposited as a guarantee of the alleged accounting responsibility of those charged by 1-O, considering that the 2 .1 million guaranteed by the Catalan Institute of Finances (ICF).
In the lawsuit before the Court of Auditors, the Prosecutor's Office is directed against more than thirty former senior officials of the Generalitat -among them the former presidents Artur Mas and Carles Puigdemont, and puts at 3.4 million euros the alleged money diverted to the Catalan independence process of 2017, including its promotion abroad.