The trial against pro-independence leaders is expected to kick off “around” February 5. This is what the Spanish Supreme Court, which will try the officials, told Spain’s home affairs ministry in a letter on Wednesday. It is the first time that the judges mention a possible kick off date.

Some weeks ago, the judge in charge of the case, Manuel Marchena, requested for the jailed leaders to be transferred from Catalonia to Madrid prisons in late January, so that they are closer to the court.  Yet on Wednesday Marchena let the ministry to take few more days to transfer them.

The seven male jailed leaders will be sent to Soto del Real penitentiary, while the two female ones will be transferred to Alcalá Meco, both in the Madrid region.  Jordi Sànchez and Jordi Cuixart spent some months in Soto del Real already, while Carme Forcadell and Dolors Bassa were already incarcerated in Alcalá Meco for several months before being moved to Catalan centers.

Tuesday to Thursday

The court will unveil in the coming days the schedule of the trial, which is expected to take place in sessions every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday for several weeks or months.

The judges are now deciding whether they accept the witnesses requested by the defendants, including the king of Spain; former Spanish president Mariano Rajoy; and  former Catalan president Carles Puigdemont.