Former presidency minister Jordi Turull has become the second jailed leader to take his case to the European Court of Human Rights. He is serving a 12-year prison sentence on sedition charges for his role in the 2017 independence referendum. One day after activist Jordi Cuixart appealed before Strasbourg, the Junts per Catalunya politician’s lawyers placed an appeal on Thursday.
His head lawyer, Jordi Pina, said that his arguments include having seen his rights to a natural judge and to an impartial court breached, as well as the right to freedom of speech. Outside the court, the lawyer talked to the press alongside exiled Catalan president Carles Puigdemont and former MP and current member of Turull’s legal team, Francesc Homs
Pina, who did not want to anticipate scenarios and said the first step is that the institution accepts the appeals for consideration, explained that they think Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights has been violated in Turull’s case. This article establishes that “everyone is entitled to a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial tribunal established by law.”
Cuixart opened the way
On Wednesday, Cuixart became the first leader to place an appeal before the European Court of Human Rights. The president of the civic organization Omnium is serving a 9-year prison sentence for sedition after leading a protest on September 20, 2017, in the buildup to the October 1, 2017 referendum. He spent two years in pre-trial detention before the Supreme Court convicted him on October 14, 2019.
Omnium will explain the content of Cuixart’s appeal in depth next Tuesday alongside various international organizations as announced on Twitter, but the organization has already explained that it has been filed in Catalan and includes around 60 reports of entities that have called for his release.