Spain's Garzon requests work transfer to Hague

Spanish judge Baltasar Garzon has asked for a transfer to work at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Spanish high court sources said.

Spain's Garzon requests work transfer to Hague

Spanish judge Baltasar Garzon, who is facing three Supreme Court enquiries, has asked for a transfer to work at the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Spanish high court sources said on Tuesday.

Garzon has asked the judges' governing body, the CGPJ, to give him permission to work as a consultant at The Hague for seven months.

"The request was submitted this morning and the CGPJ will review it tomorrow," a CGPJ source said.

The chief prosecutor in The Hague, Luis Moreno Ocampo, invited Garzon to work there in 2002.

Garzon won international fame for his attempt in 1998 to extradite former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet for human rights abuses.

Right-wing unions and political parties accused him earlier this year of abusing his judicial powers by opening an investigation into alleged human rights crimes carried out under the 1939-75 dictatorship of Francisco Franco.

The Supreme Court ruled that he had probably abused his judicial powers in ordering the probe, a ruling against which Garzon appealed last month on the ground of partiality on the part of the Supreme Court justice in charge of the case.

He also faces two other Supreme Court enquiries: one for bugging corruption suspects linked to the opposition Popular Party, and another for dropping an investigation into the head of Spain's biggest bank Santander after receiving payments for giving courses sponsored by the bank in New York.

Human rights activists around the world have praised Garzon for pioneering the principle of universal jurisdiction, under which perpetrators of crimes such as genocide can be tried anywhere if the courts of their own country fail to prosecute.

In Spain he is a divisive figure, praised by descendants of civil war victims and members of the left for his attempt to investigate the crimes of Franco, but derided by conservatives as a publicity-seeking tool of the ruling Socialists.

Reuters

Last Mod: 12 Mayıs 2010, 08:21
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