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The Spanish Civil Guard has delivered a new report to the judge of the National Audience criminal court who is investigating the organizers of the pro-independence Democratic Tsunami protest platform, in which it reiterates claims made in April that Marta Rovira, secretary general of the Catalan Republican Left (ERC) and exiled in Switzerland, "carried out acts of coordination for the Democratic Tsunami movement", and asserts that these were "with regard to the search for institutional support and support from her party". This accusation is based solely on the messages that Rovira, who used the alias Matagalls (name of a Catalan mountain), sent to the former Catalan government minister, Xavier Vendrell (ERC), and also to the head of Carles Puigdemont's office, Josep Lluís Alay. There are no further indications of criminal action or misuse of public funds in the Civil Guard report, dated November 2nd and to which has had access this Friday.

The senior ERC leader has not, at this point, been formally accused by the National Audience judge over the case of Democratic Tsunami, a digital platform that was launched in September 2019 and that through social media managed to get thousands of people, mostly in Catalonia, to mobilize against the Spanish Supreme Court's verdict convicting the Catalan pro-independence leaders, with major protests held at Barcelona's El Prat airport and on the motorway access between France and Spain at La Jonquera.

The amnesty negotiation

The report, although commissioned by the judge, has been presented in the midst of the negotiation, involving the Socialists (PSOE), ERC and Together for Catalonia (Junts), for an amnesty law for those accused of independence process offences. This timing is slightly surprising, given that a week ago, the Civil Guard investigators had asked for one further month to conclude it, an extension which was granted by the judge Manuel García Castellón at the same time as he accepted the requests of Vox and the anti-terrorism association Dignidad y Justicia to conduct a private prosecution in the case. The Tsunami investigation is one of those that could be wiped out by the amnesty law.

More names

In the 202-page report, entitled "Report on the Implications of the Democratic Tsunami", the Civil Guard cites not only Rovira, Vendrell and Alay, but also makes accusations of involvement in the protest platform against businessman Oriol Soler (alias Rigoberta), whom, it affirms, carried out communications tasks, as well as against the activists Marta Molina and Josep Campmajó, in addition to the journalist Jesús Rodríguez, the computer scientist Jaume Cabaní, the ERC deputy Rubén Wagensberg, and Oleguer Serra, from Òmnium Cultural. It devotes a chapter to each of them.

In the conversations that took place on messaging platforms, which were already included in the case summary, the report repeats the details of chats between Marta Rovira and Xavier Vendrell, showing the difficulties in moving forward with mobilizations, while anticipating convictions for the leaders of the independence process, on trial in the Supreme Court for sedition and other offences. "People are being recruited to carry out your action, which the leadership is talking about," Rovira tells Vendrell on October 3rd, 2019. And two days later comes Vendrell's anger: "If necessary, I'll go to Lledoners [prison]. I can't understand what problem they see. Our people need a victory!" making reference to the option of visiting the leaders, then imprisoned on remand while awaiting the verdicts, to get their approval for the mass demonstrations.

Damages calculated

The new content in the Civil Guard report is that for the first time it includes damage estimates, with a report from the Barcelona city council calculating at 85,303 euros, the damage caused to the city, with 79 containers burned, in the Democratic Tsunami mobilization for the Barça-Madrid match, at Camp Nou, on October 18th, 2019.

In addition, the report indicates that the airline Vueling estimates at 978,000 euros the expenses caused by the demonstration at Barcelona airport, on October 14th, 2019, the day that the Supreme Court sentences against the political prisoners was announced, when 169 flights were cancelled. For its part, the airport operator Aena gave a figure for damage at the El Prat airport, in areas such as the carpark, to 389,244 euros. A report from the Spanish transport ministry is also included, which claims that 130,354 euros worth of damage was caused by the mobilizations in November on the AP-7 motorway at La Jonquera and Salt. And the motorway concession holder Acesa also gives a figure for the losses it suffered due to the various closures of the motorway: 566,115 euros.

Now, the National Audience judge will have to decide against which individuals he must focus the investigation and whether to send the case to the courts of Barcelona, now that the crime of sedition has been abolished, an aspect which is being studied by the public prosecutors.