Sunday, February 25

The trial for the Alvia accident will begin in September and will last ten months


The sessions are scheduled for the intervention of 494 witnesses, 193 experts and 21 expert witnesses and the train driver and a former senior ADIF official will be tried for reckless homicide

Matthew Balin

The Criminal Court number two of Santiago de Compostela has proposed that the trial for the Alvia train accident, which occurred in July 2013 and in which 80 people died, begin on September 20 and extend until June 2023, almost a decade after the fatal sinister.

In her resolution, against which no appeal can be lodged, Judge María Elena Fernández makes a proposal for the calendar to the parties involved in the procedure, as well as the content of each of the sessions of the oral hearing, in which the train driver, Francisco José Garzón, and the Director of Traffic Safety at ADIF at the time the line was put into operation, Andrés María Cortabitarte, in case the acts they are accused of constituted eighty crimes of homicide by serious professional negligence, 145 injuries due to serious professional negligence and a crime of damage.

In the order, he proposes that the trial begin on Tuesday, September 20 with the practice of evidence related to the criminal action, which would take place until December 22, leaving January 10, 11, 12 and 13 reserved for possible incidents or the continuation of declarations that could be pending. In this way, the testimonies related to the civil actions would begin on January 17 and would last until the end of May.

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The calendar contained in the resolution establishes that on September 20, 21 and 22 the parties raise the preliminary questions and question the two defendants, while September 23, 27, 28 and 29 are reserved for possible incidents. The statements of the 45 witnesses, including ten police officers, would take place between October 4 and 27, while those of the 18 expert witnesses would take place between November 2 and 15; and, those of the 18 experts, would be carried out between November 16 and December 22.

civil action

The civil action, according to the proposal, would begin on January 17, with the statements of 90 witnesses, which would end on the 26th of that month. The 35 proposed coroners would intervene between January 31 and February 7, while the remaining 44 experts would do so between February 8 and 16.

The order specifies that from February 21, and until mid-May, the statements of the 277 witnesses, 96 expert witnesses and two expert witnesses proposed by the lawyers in the case, as well as the 82 witnesses and one witness -expert proposed only by the Public Prosecutor.

In the resolution, the magistrate indicates that the parties have a non-extendable period of five days to, where appropriate, allege and justify the causes that make the terms of the proposed schedule impossible or inconvenient and/or reveal any omission or material error. that they can warn. The judge requests, both the parties and the different interveners, maximum availability, given “the complexity of organizing a trial of these characteristics.”

However, it indicates that, all this, without prejudice to the fact that, depending on the vicissitudes that arise during the development of the trial, the modification of the calendar and content of the sessions that is initially established may be agreed upon.

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