For three and a half hours, the lawyers for 16 of those charged over last year's Catalan referendum, in prison, in exile or free, argued against the charge of rebellion and misuse of public funds. Also to speak were public prosecutors, the state's legal service and lawyers for far-right political party VOX. All of them were appearing before judges of the Supreme Court's Appeals Chamber.
The defence argument was, as always, that there is no possible crime, that there wasn't either rebellion nor violence and that the Supreme Court isn't competent to investigate or judge the case. They emphasised the fact that there are various courts investigating the independence process. They also called for the investigation to be declared invalid and said that they will appeal what they consider to have been a process full of irregularities to the European courts.
Prosecutors also stuck to the same arguments as before, saying that there was violence in Catalonia, "announced by chapters and parts" and that it was carried out in the end on 20th September, as Civil Guard searched the Catalan Economy ministry, and the 1st October, during the referendum itself. Specifically, according to legal sources, prosecutors described it as a "chronicle of a rebellion foretold", playing on the title of Gabriel García Marquéz's work Chronicle of a Death Foretold.
In the coming days, the Supreme Court will come to a verdict on the appeals from all those charged in the case against their prosecutions. Once any prosecution is confirmed, those involved can be suspended from their political roles. That would mean that Oriol Junqueras, Jordi Turull, Josep Rull, Raül Romeva and Jordi Sànchez would have to leave their seats as deputies in the Catalan Parliament whilst in prison accused of rebellion. As for the exiles, as they're not in custody they don't have to be suspended, but the Supreme Court could do so anyway. That would leave Carles Puigdemont and Toni Comín out of Parliament too.
The suspension of their political rights means they won't be able to hold elected office nor stand in any election until the trial in which, if they are found guilty, they would be banned from political office.