The president of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), Koen Lenaerts, foresees that the key decision on the Euroorders of the procés will arrive towards the end of the year. This was indicated by the Belgian jurist this Friday after an intervention in the Constitutional Court, in what was the first visit to the TC by a president of the Court of Luxembourg.
In line with what his conference had been, Lenaerts explained that the resolution is “of fundamental importance” for the future of European arrest warrants. A reflection of this is that the matter has been assigned to the Grand Chamber, made up of 15 magistrates. He is also “aware”, he has stated, of the relevance of the matter for the Spanish Justice.
Lenaerts has also indicated after his speech that the matter of the European orders clearly enters the block in which the EU regulations are preponderant and all the member countries must abide by it, without being able to make interpretations that question its effectiveness. The euroorder “is totally a matter of European law,” he said.
Precisely, the president of the CJEU had focused part of his presentation in the assembly hall of the TC on the determination of when it should be considered that EU law should prevail over other guarantees, even greater, that certain countries may include in their legislation.
The jurist made special reference to a case of enormous relevance in the evolution of the CJEU – the Melloni case – which was raised in its day by the Constitutional Court. On that occasion, a limit was placed on the margin that Spain had to object to delivery to other member countries. “Melloni thus constitutes the quintessential example of situations where national protection standards cannot be applied, since the Union legislator has provided for a European protection standard.”
“The Union respects the national identity of the Member States. However, this identity cannot serve as an excuse […] to call into question the interpretation of Union law made by the Court of Justice”, has saying.
The magistrate of the Supreme Court Pablo Llarena brought before the CJEU the refusal of the Belgian Justice to hand over one of those claimed by the procés, the former minister Lluís Puig. In his preliminary question, he asked the European court to clarify the margins that countries have to deny deliveries to another member state. Specifically, if, as Belgium did, it was possible to examine Spanish laws and conclude that the Supreme Court was not the competent court to investigate the former minister.
The magistrate does not consider it that way, nor does the Spanish Government, according to the intervention a few weeks ago before the Grand Chamber to study the case. A resolution favorable to the execution of the European warrant in the Puig case would make it more difficult for Belgium to refusal to hand over other fugitives such as Carles Puigdemont. The execution of the euroorders of the former president, like those of the other fugitives, is on hold pending the ruling of the CJEU.
After the intervention in the court chaired by magistrate Pedro González-Trevijano, Lenaerts has been received in La Zarzuela by Felipe VI.
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