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Josep Miquel Arenes, a Spanish rapper who performs as Valtònyc, returned to court in Belgium today with the hope the court of appeal in Ghent would postpone the case on his extradition to Spain on charges of glorifying terrorism to a later date, waiting for a response to a preliminary question sent to the Court of Justice of the European Union.

According to the rapper himself, Spain has upheld its request for his extradition, whilst the court has, as expected, decided to let him remain free pending a response from the court in Luxembourg.

Translation: Leaving the court. Spain maintains the extradition [warrant] for [glorifying] terrorism and trying to apply a Penal Code [introduced] after the events. The court in Ghent keeps me free in Belgium waiting for the response from the Luxembourg court.

The question for Luxembourg

As the rapper's lawyers explained in November, the Belgian court asked the EU Court of Justice which of two Spanish laws on glorifying terrorism should be taken into account in the case. There's one which was in force in 2012, when he released the songs under consideration, and another introduced in 2015 which is "more severe". The question is whether the latter law can be retroactively applied.

Spain has applied for Valtònyc's extradition to serve a sentence of three and a half years for glorifying terrorism, insulting the crown and threats over his lyrics. The Belgian court has thus far made no comment on the latter two charges, awaiting the judgement on the first. Another court in Ghent had initially opposed his extradition, a decision appealed by Flemish public prosecutors on behalf of Spain.

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