Esperanza Aguirre’s defense, charged in the Punic piece that investigates the irregular financing of the Madrid PP, has submitted a brief to the Investigating Court number 6 of the National Court in which it opposes the application of the reform of the Criminal Procedure Law that came into force last Tuesday and that eliminates the time limits for the investigation. This reform should take immediate effect in Púnica, whose judicial investigation was scheduled to end on August 27 and which may now be prolonged in application of the new legal text.
The elimination of the terms that the PP imposed on the investigations comes into force in time to save the Punic case
The reaction of Aguirre’s lawyer is produced by the presentation of a letter by the popular accusation of Adade and the PSOE asking the instructor, Manuel García-Castellón, that, for information purposes only, issue a resolution to know the new date of end of the investigation according to the reform of the Criminal Procedure Law. In this document, the chaos in which the case is found is denounced, without the complete formation of the separate pieces that were determined and with abundant documentation that has not yet been made available to the parties, despite the fact that there are only four weeks left for the end of instruction.
For its part, the representation of Aguirre alleges that on November 30, 2018, the judge issued an order in which he set “a final deadline for the investigation” at forty months that were completed on March 30, 2022 and that the instance Superior, the Criminal Chamber of the National Court, also ruled in that regard.
“The Fourth Section of the Criminal Chamber established the maximum period of duration of this instruction establishing that it was necessary to arbitrate a not excessively long period of extension, after the duration of the investigative period of the case, determining it concretely in 18 months, and that a term for a longer time would have been disproportionate and excessive, “says the letter from Aguirre’s defense, to which elDiario.es had access. At the end of the investigation, Judge García-Castellón must issue an order for its conclusion in which he will propose to judge the accused as Esperanza Aguirre or to file the case regarding them.
The new legal text, which responds to a clamor of judges and prosecutors against the deadlines established for the investigation during the PP Government, places the new investigation period at twelve months, renewable as many times as necessary by the judge at the request of any of the parts. In its transitional provision, the Law seems clear: this modification “will be applicable to the processes in process at the entry into force of this law”. This is the case of Púnica, which began training in 2014 and is experiencing a period of turmoil these weeks with the threatening date of August 27 as the final end of the investigation after the two-month extension as a result of the suspension of the judicial terms for the crisis of the Covid-19.
According to sources of the National Court, Judge García-Castellón weighs what to resolve because it weighs, they add, the aforementioned order issued by the Criminal Chamber on April 10, 2019 and that the issue affects fundamental rights. Other legal sources state that the entry into force of the legal reform in the terms in which it is drafted subtracts any value from that ruling of the Fourth Section. The Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office is weighing for now the application of the new legal text and extending the investigation of Punica.
Esperanza Aguirre says that this is not the time to “assess the complexity and time required to complete the instruction”, that the “extremely abundant evidence, serves as a perfect basis for the assessment” of the provisions of article 324.4 of the Law of Criminal prosecution. “We understand the political interest of the PSOE in that the present procedure is prolonged as much as possible, but in this jurisdictional area, legal reasons and respect for guarantees must prevail,” says Esperanza Aguirre’s lawyer.