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Spain's National Audience court is this Monday starting the trial of major Josep Lluís Trapero and the former leadership of the interior ministry which, before starting the public hearings to be held in San Fernando de Henares, is already a whole host of anomalies. The first, that the public prosecution service is going ahead with the charge of rebellion, when it's completely clear it's untenable after the trial of the Catalan government and pro-independence social leaders held last year in the Supreme Court which ended with sentences totalling a hundred years in prison.

Then why is the charge of rebellion being maintained when the Supreme Court already rejected it for all those tried of higher rank, including interior minister Quim Forn? Quite simply, because otherwise the trial couldn't be held in the National Audience and would have to take place somewhere like the High Court of Justice of Catalonia or the Provincial Audience of Barcelona?

It it wasn't that major Trapero has represented, for much of the police and political classes in Madrid, no less than a key part of the pro-independence Catalan machinery since that brilliant performance by the corps of the Mossos d'Esquadra during the terrorist attacks in August 2017 in Barcelona and Cambriles, when it was able to take apart the cell without further police help, very likely the public exposure of the former head of the Catalan police wouldn't have been so high. Nor the media's unease with him, either.

The attacks ended with 24 people dead, eight of them terrorists, but the widespread impression is that the Catalan police acted as a true comprehensive police force at a key moment in history and facing an issue of enormous magnitude. Then came the 1st October referendum and the declaration of independence on the 27th, but to accuse Trapero of carelessness or collaboration with the Catalan government is a great exaggeration.

Anyone who had anything to do with Trapero during the years he headed the Mossos knows of his integrity and professionalism. But the persecution he has experienced doesn't answer to reason. Hence the absurdity of such a trial in which his superiors have already been absolved of a charge for which the major, former secretary general of the interior ministry Cèsar Puig and former director general of police Pere Soler could face 11 years in prison, and superintendent Teresa Laplana, four years.