The Barcelona Provincial Court calls for an investigation into the case of the leader of Esquerra’s parliamentary group Josep Maria Jové, and Esquerra European Parliament spokesperson Diana Riba, at the request of the party’s counsel Andreu Van den Eynde
The Provincial Court of Barcelona calls for allegations on the Catalangate espionage scandal made by the leader of the Esquerra Republicana parliamentary group Josep Maria Jové and Esquerra’s European Parliament spokesperson Diana Riba to be looked into. Both victims are currently members of the Pegasus parliamentary investigation committees, the former in the Parliament of Catalonia and the latter in the European Parliament.
The court specifically rules that one of the companies in Israeli business group NSO, the marketer of the Pegasus spyware, is to be formally charged, while calling the current director of Spain’s National Intelligence Centre (CNI) Esperanza Castelerio as a witness. The judges have also ordered the CNI to transfer all information regarding the purchase of the spyware. In addition, the Court suggests that a statement be taken from the members of Esquerra.
These ruling by the Court came after the request by Esquerra’s legalcounsel Andreu Van den Eynde. In the complaint, Jové and Riba call for the focus of the investigation to be placed on the Israeli company and the CNI, as well as on other state bodies that have access to the purchase of Pegasus.
Lawyer Andreu Van den Eynde underlined this decision by the Court, saying that “so far, no Court had taken a position on the need to investigate the case,” which according to the lawyer “could indicate how the investigation will evolve and affect the other open proceedings on cases of espionage.” “In this regard” said Mr Van den Eynde, “it is a position we applaud.”
Mr Van den Eynde has been demanding of the courts and has insisted on the need to get to the bottom of the case. “We have been asking for this for some time, the courts need to carry out a diligent investigation of Catalangate.” “It is a matter of protection of fundamental, civil and political rights,” concluded the lawyer.
Esquerra Republicana battling on all fronts
Esquerra Republicana emphasize that the lack of initiative by the Spanish state to look into the case, both at a political and a judicial level, is flagrant. In this regard, Esquerra recalls the positions of high-level international bodies, including the resolution by three United Nations rapporteurs, in which they recognize violations of fundamental rights in the espionage of the Catalan independence movement using Pegasus and demand that the Spanish state carries out investigations. This requirement has been reiterated by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, the UN’s highest human rights institution.
For their part, the Commissions looking into Pegasus at the Parliament of Catalonia and the European Parliament, both with Esquerra representatives, are also continuing their course. Esquerra Republicana thus asserts its part in the work done on all fronts.