The image is usual. In some cases, opponents who have been studying to be a judge or prosecutor for several years go to the Supreme Court to examine themselves and take photos, sometimes in the courtroom where they are questioned. The governing chamber of the Supreme Court now understands that these photos are not serious and has demanded their "prohibition" at a meeting held a few weeks ago. Every year more than 4,000 people take part in these oppositions, the different tests of which are held in the halls of the Supreme Court, in front of the Villa de Paris park in Madrid.
The matter was not in order of the day but it was studied by the government room of the Supreme Court on April 25 in the question and answer phase. According to sources from this organization to elDiario.es, the issue came to be discussed due to the case of an opponent who, after approving, took a photo in the hearing room sitting where the court usually sits while making the sign of the hand victory.
The agreement is clear and was raised under the heading "prohibition of obtaining photos by opponents in opposition events held in this Palace of Justice, seat of the Supreme Court." The resolution is to go to the selection commission so that the presidents of each of the courts prevent these photos. "Avoid obtaining this type of images that, in some way, are not consistent with the seriousness of the selection process and the place where the tests are carried out, such as the Courtrooms of the Supreme Court," says the government room in your agreement.
These same sources explain that there was a debate with a diversity of opinions in which some members of the government chamber understood that it was a matter of no importance, while others defended that taking photos in that room where other people come to be judged is not respectful enough.
The solution, they explain, is that the room is closed as soon as the tests are finished and that they cannot be accessed immediately afterwards, when the opponents can enter to take photos. This measure, therefore, does not affect other areas of the Supreme Court where opponents also tend to be photographed before or after being examined: the main stairs or the main facade of the building.
The government room of the Supreme Court is made up of eight members from its different chambers in addition to the president, Carlos Lesmes, and the government secretary. Among them are the presidents of the chambers and five more magistrates. They are renewed every five years and their mission, explains the Supreme Court itself, is to guarantee "the proper functioning of the Supreme Court, as well as to ensure the exact execution of the agreements adopted by the Government Chamber".
The Supreme Court or the General Council of the Judiciary do not and cannot give orders or guidelines to judges on how to use their profiles on public social networks, where dozens of jurists have accounts in which they identify themselves as members of the judiciary or the judiciary. prosecution. But there is an independent body of the judges' governing body, the Ethics Committee, which has issued its own recommendations on how judges should behave on platforms like Twitter.
None of these recommendations refer to photos in court, but they do refer to their freedom of expression when talking about politics or public affairs. Already in 2019, for example, this Judicial Ethics Committee called for "extreme care and prudence" in the use of social networks. In another ruling from January 2021, he asked members of the judiciary for "prudence and restraint" in the use of social networks such as Twitter. That same year he also advised against going to social gatherings of the heart.
His last ruling on this matter was issued in April of this year and he explained that the judges' freedom of expression does not cover "demonstrations carried out on social networks and the media that seriously violate the rule of law, the constitutional order and democracy." They said this after studying the case of an unidentified judge who made statements on the internet supporting the Catalan politicians convicted of the procés. That, says the Committee, are words that "violate the moral commitment and loyalty that judges assume when they take the oath or promise required by the Organic Law of the Judiciary to take office."