“Complicated situation in Moscow right now”. This message was sent by Josep Lluís Alay a Carles Puigdemont, which he identifies as “K”, on August 23, 2020, according to a report of the Civil Guard which is part of the investigation of the contacts with Russia of leaders of the ‘procés’, and to which El Periódico de Catalunya had access. In the conversations located on the mobile phone of Alay, then head of the office of the ‘expresident’, with different people around him, the reiterated will of these independence leaders not to make statements that could annoy the Government of Vladimir Putin.
Specifically, Alay snaps at Puigdemont: “We have a complicated triangle: Lukashenko-Navalny-Snowden“He was referring, respectively, to the authoritarian pro-Russian president of Belarus, the lawyer and leader of the opposition to Putin who suffered poisoning in 2020 and is currently imprisoned, and the former US intelligence employee who leaked information classified as top secret and to whom Russia granted asylum. “I recommend that you say nothing about Navalny for now. Nothing is clear and I think it is better to wait and see if there has been a poisoning or if that is where it came from, ”he continues.
Through instant messaging, Alay talks with Gonzalo Boye, lawyer for Puigdemont, on the need not to speak out on sensitive issues for Russia, such as the support of the ‘expresident’ asking for a pardon for Snowden. “Snowden’s letter from the ‘president’ has been a very risky bet, in my opinion,” Alay explained to Boye on August 20, 2020. The lawyer replied: “But it is to the USA, not to Russia.” Puigdemont’s office replies: “You know I’m pro-Snowden, but it’s like Navalny; you have to be careful with the times. ”
Alexei Navalny was convicted and imprisoned earlier this year for violating the terms of a 2014 fraud sentence. Alay maintains in that same conversation: “But if we bet in public on the Kremlin, let’s do it for real”, to later add: “Nothing from Navalny “, given the possibility that Puigdemont could make a tweet in his favor. The lawyer asks him to make clear to the leader of the Junts the need to remain silent. “Tell him now,” asks Boye. Alay responds: “I have made him the reflection [a Puigdemont] that the moment in Moscow is very complicated with that devilish triangle for Putin. ”
The lawyer and Alay regret in another conversation (on September 14, 2020) Puigdemont’s tweet in which he welcomed some Belarus opponents. “We will have to tell the Russians that this is just to mislead,” Boye tells him. “We have a bad streak,” Alay responds. The lawyer insists: “Yes, but we have to build a good story about this for friends.”
“You have to avoid Navalny, without a doubt”
This extreme caution in matters related to Russia reappears when the two talk about the questions that a Russian journalist, whom they describe as “theirs”, could ask Puigdemont in an interview. “Pact questions and I avoid Navalny perhaps,” Alay says to Boye, who responds: “You have to avoid Navalny, without a doubt.” The lawyer establishes the lines through which the meeting between the journalist and the ‘expresident’ must pass.
In the messages found on his mobile, Alay also celebrates the appointment of Evgeny Primakov, member of the Committee on International Affairs of the State Duma, as head as head of the Federal Agency for the Affairs of Collaboration with the Commonwealth of Independent States. “Some say that he has more power than the Foreign Minister,” says the head of Puigdemont’s office, who also shares a screenshot of a exchange of messages with Primakov in which he informs him that a Catalan newspaper is going to publish an article on Russia that he hopes “will help to show the situation as a whole, also from the Russian perspective.” Primakov responds: “Great news and great work; ‘thank you very very much'”.
Boye has affirmed to this newspaper that those comments with Alay are “simple analyzes of the geopolitical situation and of different alternatives”, at the same time that he has denied that his intention was to make recommendations to the leader of JxCat. “Puigdemont acts as he considers,” he sentenced.
The russian mobster
The Civil Guard has delivered a second report to the judge about Alay’s motive that focuses on a conversation between Boye and the same head of the Puigdemont office in which the latter assures the lawyer that Zakhar Kalashov “It is a yacid” (an ancient religion of North Kurdistan). From there, they both have a conversation about this Russian-Georgian mafia boss convicted in Spain of laundering funds obtained from his criminal activities. Alay even sends Boye a photo of this character on a beach in Dubai along with other people.
The lawyer exposes the following to the head of Puigdemont’s office: “Through Gómez de Liaño [abogado] and by paying a lot, a lot of money, they get the sentence to be just a little less than the half imposed by which they let him go free while he appeals … that was the deal. A few weeks later, a new extradition order arrives and they put him in prison again and ends up extraditing him with what K. is screwed up and Gómez de Liaño and his judicial partner earn a lot of money and take him out of the way. ”
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.