Jailed Catalan leader was entitled to immunity as lawmaker: EU court

A Catalan leader jailed for his role in an independence referendum deemed illegal by Spain was entitled to immunity as member of the European Parliament despite not having being able to take up his seat, the EU’s highest court ruled on Thursday. The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruling in respect of Oriol Junqueras marks a likely boost for the Catalan separatist movement and potentially puts judicial authorities in Brussels and Madrid at loggerheads. Junqueras was sentenced in October to 13 years in jail for sedition and misuse of public funds related to the region’s failed independence bid in autumn 2017, which Spanish authorities had declared illegal.

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