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The Government of Pedro Sánchez granted in 2019 a total of 39 pardons between January and April, both included. It is more than double the grace measures that were granted throughout the year 2018, when until June the government of Mariano Rajoy Party ruled and from then on the PSOE de Sánchez arrived at the Moncloa Palace after winning the First motion of censorship of Spanish democracy.

In 2018, only 17 pardons were given, the lowest figure in the entire decade, while in 2017 a total of 26 were granted; and in 2016, there were 27.

Nine pardons were approved last January; in February, six; in March, 14 measures of grace; and in April, a total of 10. There is the circumstance that on April 28, general elections were held and, after the appointment of the citizens with the polls, the concessions of the pardons were paralyzed.

In total, since governing the Socialists, 47 measures of grace have been granted, among which a total of 37 had favorable prior reports from the Prosecutor and the sentencing court. According to the official data to which EL MUNDO has had access, updated as of December 5, the Pedro Sánchez Executive granted only two pardons in which both the Supreme Court and the Prosecutor's Office had informed against it.

He did so during the month of February, when he pardoned the trade unionists Serafín Rodríguez and Carlos Rivas , who had been sentenced to three years in prison for their performance in pickets in a transport strike in Pontevedra , in 2008. In this case, it was the Parliament of Galicia , which urged the Autonomous Government to address the Ministry of Justice for the Council of Ministers to grant such pardons.

In the 10 remaining grace measures that have been granted by the Socialist Council of Ministers, the sentencing court or the prosecutor always informed in favor of granting them. In fact, the government sources consulted explain that in many cases the Executive has denied pardons, even with the favorable opinions of judges and prosecutors.

The criterion followed by the Minister of Justice, Dolores Delgado, and respected by the Council of Ministers, is that no pardons be granted for sexual crimes, or family violence, or for crimes against road safety, against humanity, corruption or for crimes against the Public Treasury.

The pardon of those convicted of 'procés'

However, throughout this year and a half that the PSOE has ruled, the possibility that Sanchez would pardon the prisoners of the 'procés' has served as a throwing weapon to his political opponents, who have repeated him to the full that he explains if He intends to grant them the controversial measures of grace.

A priori, the pardon of the former members of the Government who starred in the independence challenge seems a path that involves too much political cost when there are other formulas - such as the granting of article 100.2 of the Penitentiary Regulation or the third degree - that can allow them in a short Timeframe enjoy a situation of semi-freedom despite the high prison sentences imposed by the Supreme Court.

However, if the ERC leader, Oriol Junqueras, or some of the former consellers of the Generalitat wanted to resume their political activity, they would inevitably need that the sentences for the period of disqualification for public office be pardoned by the Executive on duty.

Article 6 of the Law of the Pardon states that "the pardon of the main penalty will carry with it the accessory that would have been imposed on the prisoner, with the exception of disqualification for public office and political rights and subject to the surveillance of the authority, which shall not be considered as understood, if no special mention has been made in the concession. " That is, disqualifications for public office can be pardoned but must be done expressly.

The jurisprudence of the pardons

To this is added another determining factor. The pardons are discretionary, but they must be motivated. This was established by the Third Chamber of the Supreme Court in 2013, when it annulled the measure of grace granted by the Government of Mariano Rajoy to a Kamikaze driver , sentenced to 13 years in prison for driving in the opposite direction in the AP-7 of Valencia and cause the death of a young woman.

In a novel ruling, the Contentious-Administrative magistrates held that, although the pardon is a discretionary measure granted by the Council of Ministers, it must be justified and submitted to judicial control in order to avoid the "arbitrariness" of public powers .

In general, despite the flood of applications received by the Ministry of Justice, the granting of thanksgiving has been greatly reduced in the last five years. Gone are the 501 pardons that were granted in 2012 or 521 in 2007 under the umbrella of the PP and PSOE governments.

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  • PP
  • Mariano Rajoy
  • Supreme Court
  • Dolores Delgado
  • ERC
  • Oriol Junqueras
  • Justice
  • PSOE
  • Pedro Sanchez

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