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This time, the Catalan political prisoners in Lledoners jail will maintain an open prison regime - with regular daytime and weekend leave from prison - while the public prosecutors' appeal against this Level 3 regime is heard. Thus, Oriol Junqueras, Raül Romeva, Jordi Turull, Josep Rull, Jordi Sànchez and Jordi Cuixart will not, for the moment, have to return to the standard lock-up routine which the prosecutors argued for. It’s quite the opposite of what happened seven months ago: last July, the prisoners were ordered back to Lledoners as soon as an appeal against the open regime was presented. 

The measures do not, however, affect Joaquim Forn as yet. Up till today it was still possible to present arguments against the prosecutors' submission and the judge has still not ruled on his case.

In today's ruling for the other male prisoners, the judge of Catalan penitentiary surveillance court number 5 said that the interim measures proposed by the prosecutors "clash with the most restrictive interpretation that must be made of rules which ultimately affect fundamental rights." It is an argument along the same lines to that given yesterday by another prisons judge, in making an identical ruling to allow Carme Forcadell and Dolors Bassa to maintain their own Level 3 prisoner status for now.

The difference for the Lledoners prisoners: a change of judge. The judge who ruled six months ago and returned them to prison is on leave, and in his place is a substitute who has followed the same steps as the judge of penitentiary surveillance court 1 in yesterday's ruling on Forcadell and Bassa.

In this way, the nine pro-independence leaders convicted of sedition will be able to retain their open regime - which allows them to leave the prison every day and only return to sleep nights, from Monday to Thursday - at least until the respective surveillance courts rule on the substance of the appeals filed by the prosecution against the Level 3 classification.



It remains to be seen what the judges' final decisions will be on whether or not to repeal the Level 3 status. Six months ago, the Supreme Court rejected it, after the prosecutors filed a series of appeals which eventually took the decision to the highest court in Spain - also the court which had originally sentenced the pro-independence leaders to jail terms for sedition and misuse of public funds in relation to the 2017 independence referendum.