Exiled Catalan president Carles Puigdemont has revealed that a Catalan businessman of an extremist persuasion has offered to bankroll a 100,000 euro plan to "arrest" the deposed Catalan leader. This, said Puigdemont, is just one of the "permanent threats" he faces, which never have any consequences. "People who threaten to commit a crime and know that nothing will happen to them because they are doing it for Spain," was how he characterised the situation on Twitter.
Gent que amenaça de cometre un delicte i sap que no li passarà res perquè ho fa per Espanya. Les amenaces permanents que rebo no tenen mai conseqüències. A l'encara ministre Borrell se li gira feina: com fer entendre que això és un senyal de democràcia plena. https://t.co/n8nTKgpJ5A— Carles Puigdemont (@KRLS) 30 de març de 2019
"People who threaten to commit a crime and know that nothing will happen to them because they're doing it for Spain. The permanent threats that I receive have no consequences. More work is piling up for the still-in-the-job minister Borrell: how to make people understand that this is the sign of a full democracy" — Carles Puigdemont
Puigdemont sent this message after a Catalan businessman had revealed he has a plan and 100,000 euros to pay for it, for anyone who could bring Puigdemont into custody - which would mean bringing him to Spain, the only place where the exiled president is wanted, after European justice rejections prompted Spain to withdraw extradition claims.
According to Spanish news site Alerta Digital (link in Spanish), "the strategist" for the plan is Gerard Bellalta, who says he has international contacts and a "carefully assembled" action plan to expel Puigdemont from Belgium and hand him over to the Spanish authorities.
"I don't want anything in return. I am only a Catalan patriot who wants to put an end to the impunity "which Puigdemont enjoys in discrediting the image of Spain internationally," asserts the businessman. He also adds that Puigdemont is lucky "to be Spanish" because "if he was an Israeli or US citizen, the Mossad or CIA would have caught him months ago."
The Catalan businessman intends to present his plan to the leaders of Spanish right wing PP and Vox parties, Pablo Casado and Santiago Abascal respectively, and he guarantees the success of the operation, which would, he says, even go as far as to involve cooperation from members of the security forces of Belgium and France. A mission which, according to his calculations, would have a total cost of one hundred thousand euros, which the businessman himself would put up.
Lawyer Gonzalo Boye gave public support to Puigdemont and hopes that both the Spanish public prosecutors and the Civil Guard are "taking action on the matter."
Imagino que @fiscal_es y/o @guardiacivil ya han tomado cartas en el asunto ¿o en más de un mes no han tenido tiempo?— Gonzalo Boye (@boye_g) 30 de març de 2019
Un empresari fatxa: "Pagaré 100.000 euros de mi bolsillo para secuestrar a Puigdemont" https://t.co/eYCHU5o7lc #xcatalunya
I imagine that @fiscal_es and/or @guardiacivil have already taken action on the matter - or have they not had time, in more than a month? A fascist businessman: "I'll pay 100,000 euros from my own pocket to kidnap Puigdemont"—Gonzalo Boye
The businessman Gerard Bellalta, who is also the president of a so-called Business Round Table of Tabarnia, appears frequently in articles in Alerta Digital. He was an unsuccessful candidate for the Barcelona mayoralty in the 2015 municipal elections, standing for Soluciones Ciudadanas, a party that he himself founded.