Friday, December 3

The Supreme Court does not consider binding the UN ruling that protects Judge Garzón

Baltasar Garzón, in a file photo.

Baltasar Garzón, in a file photo.

The Special Chamber of the Supreme Court considers that an opinion of the Human Rights Committee of the United Nations (HIM-HER-IT), like the one who has agreed with former judge Baltasar Garzón, It is not comparable to a resolution of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) and remember that – according to the Organic Law of the Judiciary – only the Strasbourg resolutions enable the review of sentences.

In a judgment of February 12, 2020, advanced by La Razón and to which Europa Press has had access, the High Court indicates that “It is not appropriate to equate the judgments of the ECHR with the recommendations or opinions of the different Committees of the various international organizations that pronounce on the fulfillment of the obligations assumed by Spain in the matter of human rights “.

The magistrates, among those who sign in the president of the General Council of the Judiciary (CGPJ) and the Supreme Court Carlos Lesmes, recall that Organic Law 7/2015, of June 21, provides that only the resolutions of the ECHR are empowering for the “review of the judgments in which the fundamental right was violated.”

According to article 5 bis of the Organic Law of the Judiciary, an appeal for review may be filed before the Supreme Court against a final judicial decision, in accordance with the procedural rules of each jurisdictional order, when the ECHR has declared that said resolution has been issued. in “violation of any of the rights recognized in the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms and its Protocols.”

The regulations also specify that The sentence will be reviewed “provided that the violation, due to its nature and seriousness, involves effects that pursue and cannot be stopped in any way other than through this review.”

Former judge Garzón, within the framework of his defense strategy, appealed his case to the Constitutional Court and the European Court of Human Rights. Both of them flatly denied his appeals against the conviction for prevarication imposed by the Supreme Court. This Thursday the UN Human Rights Committee has agreed.

Committee message to Spain

The ruling concludes that the Supreme Court violated the right to the presumption of innocence and the right to review the conviction and sentence of former National Court judge Baltasar Garzón in 2012, when he sentenced him to 11 years of disqualification for a crime of prevarication for ordering the intervention of the phones of the lawyers of the main defendants in the Gürtel case.

He assures that the former judge did not have “access to an independent and impartial court in the proceedings against him in the framework of the Franco and Gürtel cases.” And it indicates that his conduct did not constitute a serious incompetence that could justify the criminal conviction that led him to lose his position as head of the Central Court of Instruction Number 5 of the National High Court.

The body of independent experts maintains that Spain must compensate the former judge for the damages caused, that “it has the obligation” to “erase the criminal record” and that it must “adopt measures to prevent similar violations from being committed in the future.”

Follow-up of the case

Within the framework of the procedure, and as established in Article 106 of the Committee’s Regulations, a “special rapporteur” will be appointed to follow up on the opinion approved in order to “make sure” that Spain has taken measures to “give effect” to the resolution.

Spain must present its “explanations or written declarations” and notify if it has adopted measures on the case of former judge Baltasar Garzón within a period of six months before the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Committee, as established in the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights.

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