Melero to Marchena on the documentary evidence phase: "I do not understand this procedure"
Xavier Melero, the attorney of Joaquim Forn, addressing the presiding magistrate of the Court on Monday at the Supreme Court

Melero to Marchena on the documentary evidence phase: "I do not understand this procedure"

The parties to the prosecution read the list of written documents they would like the Court to take into account, which has given rise to doubts among the defence counsels

Catalan independence trial

Once the statements of witnesses and experts was over, the so-called "documentary evidence phase" of the Catalan independence trial began on Monday after the elections.

In this phase of the public hearing of the trial in the Supreme Court, where the pro-independence leaders are being leaders are being judged, videos submitted by the parties to the prosecution and the defence counsels will be viewed.


List of documents of the parties to the prosecution

However, the presiding magistrate of the Court, Manuel Marchena, stated that  the videos will not be viewed on Monday, but "in another sitting".

This first sitting began with an enumeration by the parties to the prosecution of the written documents they would like the Court to take into account when passing judgment.

Prosecutor Consuelo Madrigal, assisted by her colleague Fidel Cadena, quoted all of the documents they had chosen such as, for instance, the original transcription of Josep Maria Jové's Moleskine or bank transfers made by Diplocat.

Melero: "I do not understand this procedure"

After a while, the defence counsel of Joaquim Forn, Xavier Melero, raised doubts about what this list meant and what would be of the other documents:

Melero: "Pardon me. I do not understand this procedure. Does this mean that the prosecutor renounces those documents she does not mention which are a part of her list, or does it mean she does not deem them to be documents for the purpose of this procedure? I mean, I do not..."

Madrigal: "No, no, no, no..."

Marchena: "This is the statement that can focus the debate with regard to the defence counsels, but, in principle, the fact is that the prosecution must highlight those documents it deems must be taken into account when weighing the evidence."


The 90 sheets of Seoane's enumeration

Once the State Attorney General had concluded, Government Attorney Rosa María Seoane stated that she had submitted a list of documents she proposed for this phase one week earlier and referred to it.

Marchena, however, told her that she would have to name all of the documents she wanted to "come to the surface" and that she could not expect this to happen without enumerating them:

"We cannot be gathered for expert testimony and deem a 90-sheet document to be reproduced. The question is that you must make these documents come to the surface, if you see fit to do so, to give the defence a chance to challenge their authenticity, the concept of documents and even their legitimacy."

Having said that, Marchena consulted the situation with the other members of the Court and insisted to Seoane, once again, that she should read the list.

She resisted to do so, Marcehna insisted, and the attorney said she was "referring to all documents", and began to read the 90 sheets.

Once she had been reading for over one hour, at 12 at noon, Marchena adjourned the sitting for recess.

When the sitting resumed around half past twelve, the defence counsels deemed that it was not necessary to carry on with this tiresome reading, and Marchena was only too happy to oblige.

The State Attorney General asks to display documents on a screen

After that, Madrigal requested displaying the remaining documents she had not listed in her statement on a script, and the Court debated this request for a few minutes without adjourning the sitting.

Many of the attorneys to the defence, however, opposed this possibility. In fact, they stated that they understood that the State Attorney General had renounced these documents, because this was the criterion established by Marchena himself.

The presiding magistrate of the court implicitly followed the demands of the defence counsels as the documents requested by the State Attorney General were not displayed on the screen.

With regard to whether or not the Court deemed the State Attorney General to have renounced the documents it did not select, Marchena said the Court would rule on it at the end of the documentary evidence phase.

After that, the defence counsels challenged the bulk of the documents put forward by the parties to the prosecution and stated the reasons for this mass challenge.

The videos, in "another sitting"

On the other hand, during the dialogue between Marchena and Seoane, it became apparent that the videos would be viewed during "another sitting".

It was then that Seoane stated that she did renounce part of the videos she had initially proposed to make the phase more "agile". Marchena then replied that, in any event, that would not be during the Monday morning sitting.


Related interactive resource: The keys of the Catalan independence trial


Catalan independence trial
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