Carles Puigdemont Detained In Italy : NPR

Member of European Parliament Carles Puigdemont prepares for an interview in Brussels. The attorney for

Member of European Parliament Carles Puigdemont prepares for an interview in Brussels. The attorney for Puigdemont claims the former Catalan chief has been detained in Sardinia, Italy.

Francisco Seco/AP


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Francisco Seco/AP


Member of European Parliament Carles Puigdemont prepares for an interview in Brussels. The lawyer for Puigdemont says the previous Catalan chief has been detained in Sardinia, Italy.

Francisco Seco/AP

BARCELONA, Spain — Former Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont, who fled Spain right after a unsuccessful secession bid for the northeastern region in 2017, was detained Thursday in Sardinia, Italy, his attorney reported.

Puigdemont, who lives in Belgium and now retains a seat in the European Parliament, has been fighting extradition to Spain, which accused him and other Catalan independence leaders of sedition.

Hi lawyer, Gonzalo Boye, stated Puigdemont was detained when he arrived in Sardinia, wherever he was to show up at an party this weekend.

The situations underneath which Puigdemont was taken into custody ended up not straight away crystal clear. Boye wrote on Twitter the ex-regional president was detained underneath a 2019 European arrest warrant, even though it had been suspended.

Law enforcement at the airport in northern Sardinia failed to answer cellular phone calls Thursday night time, when police in the city of Alghero claimed they were not aware of his detention.

The European Parliament voted in March to lift the immunity of Puigdemont and two of his associates. In July the 3 EU lawmakers failed to have their immunity restored immediately after the European Union’s common court docket mentioned that they did not reveal they ended up at threat of currently being arrested.

Sardinian media reported earlier in the week he was owing to attend an celebration in Alghero on Sunday, so his existence on the Mediterranean island experienced been predicted. Sardinian media had also claimed that Puigdemont was invited by a Sardinian pro-separatist group.

Puigdemont’s office environment reported in a statement he had traveled to Alghero from Brussels to go to a folklore pageant.

Puigdemont was transferred to a jail in Sassari, a metropolis about a 40 kilometer drive northeast of Alghero, the Italian information agency ANSA reported. Before experiences stated a decide in Sassari would rule on Friday on no matter if Puigdemont need to be freed.

Puigdemont and a variety of his separatist colleagues fled to Belgium in October 2017, fearing arrest following holding an independence referendum for Catalonia that the Spanish courts and federal government mentioned was unlawful.

Nine Catalan separatists gained prison sentences for their position in the 2017 referendum ranging from 9 to 13 several years. They were being pardoned in July.