FRANCO’s GHOST: Spain's Franco-era probe judge Baltasar Garzon on trial


FRANCO’s GHOST: Spain's Franco-era probe judge Baltasar Garzon on trial
by Darius Kadivar

Judge Baltasar Garzon is accused of breaking a 1977 amnesty law, when he tried to investigate alleged human rights abuses, committed during Spain's civil war and during the dictatorship of Franco that followed. Baltasar Garzon, renowned for his investigations into human rights abuses in Spain and Latin America, appeared before the Madrid court on Tuesday to face the first of three trials, which his supporters say are politically motivated. (See Related BBC News)


Crusading Spanish Judge Stands Trial Himself (AP):

Judge Baltasar Garzon faces breach of trust charges (AlJazeera):

One of Spain's best known judges has gone on trial in the country's supreme court on charges of abusing judicial powers. Al Jazeera's Jonah Hull reports from Madrid. Jan 17, 2012



Judge Baltasar Garzon came to worldwide attention in the late 1990s, when former Chilean military ruler Augusto Pinochet was arrested in London on his initiative. The judge was acting under Spain's principle of universal jurisdiction, which holds that some crimes are so grave that they can be tried anywhere regardless of where the offences were committed. Pinochet headed Chile's military regime from 1973-1990, when about 3,000 people were killed or went missing in his crackdown on leftist opposition. Pinochet was arrested in the UK in 1998 and detained for 18 months while Spain's extradition request was considered. In the end, it was ruled he was too frail and he was allowed to go home.

Profile: Judge Baltasar Garzon Here

Career highlights :


·      Chilean former military ruler Augusto Pinochet arrested in London on his initiative in 1998


·      Argentine ex-naval officer Adolfo Scilingo jailed for crimes against humanity in 2005


·      18 al-Qaeda members jailed in Madrid in 2005


·       Former Spanish Interior Minister Jose Barrionuevo jailed for 10 years over anti-Eta death squads, later pardoned







Spain's Painful Road Towards National Reconciliation





Premier Carlos Arias Navarro announces the news of Franco's death - 20/11/1975:



For decades, Spain cast a veil over the atrocities committed during its civil war. But this isolated vast sections of society. Now, breaking this pact of silenceis opening old wounds.


To some, the government's decision to recognize victims of Franco's regime is simply righting past wrongs. But many don't want to revisit this painful period of Spanish history. 


"In Spanish history books, there are some blank pages", states Francisco Espinosa. "Only the side of the dictatorship has been told". His father was killed by Franco's men during the civil war. Now he hopes to identify his father's body and give him a proper burial. Since Franco died more than 30 years ago, there has been a nationwide pact of silence about the atrocities committed during thecivil war. Now the government wants to reopen the archives and offer compensation to the Nationalists' victims. But these plans are reopening oldwounds for the Rupublicans' victims.


Produced by ABC Australia (April 2007)


Distributed by Journeyman Pictures


Franco's Ghost - Spain

Witness- Digging up the Past (Aljazeera English):

One man sets out to exhume the ghosts of Spain's totalitarianism past.

Part I:

Part II:







The Symbol of Spain’s Unity Owes much to

King Juan Carlos’ Personality




The Symbol of Spain’s Unity Owes much to King Juan Carlos’ Personality, notably because

Of his behavior and role in containing the Military putch in 1981. Hence many Spaniards are

Said to consider themselves more ‘Juan Carlist’ than ‘Monarchist’.

Coronation Ceremony of King Juan Carlos (1975): 

King's Oath in Front Of Parliament:

Military Takeover of the Parliament by Franchist General Tejero on 23 February, 1981:

King Juan Carlos speaks onTelevision against the Coup in Parliament:

King Juan Carlos to Chávez: "Shut up" (ENGLISH SUBTITLES):

King Juan Carlos I of Spain tells Hugo Chávez "Why don't you shut up" (¿Por qué no te callas?) and leaves the meeting of the 17th Ibero-American Summit during a speech by Nicaragua's Daniel Ortega, 10 November 2007.


Related Pictory:

THE SUN ALSO RISES: Shah of Iran and Queen Soraya visit Franco's Spain (1957)

ADIEU JORGE: Tribute to Screenwriter Jorge Semprun (1923-2011)

Related Blogs:

DEVIL's ADVOCATE: Mir-Hossein Mousavi 'involved inmassacre', says report

WHAT DID THE DUKE DO ? Spanish king's son-in-law dropped from official duties

A KING’s SALARY:Spain’s Royal Family Publish Salaries For The First Time

Other ‘Judiciary’ Blogs:

VOA’s OFOGH:Abbas Milani and Mansour Borji on Fate of Iran’s Christians

DISCRIMINATION:Vendetta Against Anglican Bishop in Iran (1980)

VOA’s OFOGH:Abbas Milani & Majid Tafreshi On Iran’s Demands For WW2 Reparations

Sarah Ferguson faces criminal charges in Turkey for filming orphanage


more from Darius Kadivar
Darius Kadivar

Spain judge Baltasar Garzon cleared on Franco probe

by Darius Kadivar on

Spain judge Baltasar Garzon cleared on Franco probe (bbc, VIDEO)


Spain's Supreme Court has cleared high-profile judge Baltasar Garzon of violating a 1977 amnesty law with his investigation of Franco-era crimes.

Two right-wing groups had accused Mr Garzon of overstepping his powers by trying to prosecute crimes committed between 1936 and 1975.

Mr Garzon said crimes against humanity should not be subject to an amnesty.

Earlier this month, he was suspended from the bench for 11 years after being found guilty of illegal phonetapping.

The 56-year-old campaigning judge is best known worldwide for helping to secure the arrest of the former Chilean leader Augusto Pinochet in London in 1998.

The BBC's Tom Burridge reports from Madrid 

Red Wine


by Red Wine on

Hmmm . . . I don't know what should i say about this news :| !

Darius Kadivar

Spanish judge 'will fight' ruling

by Darius Kadivar on

Spanish judge 'will fight' ruling (bbc)


Spain's most prominent judge, Baltasar Garzon, vows to fight his conviction and 11-year suspension from the judiciary for authorising prison phonetapping.


Darius Kadivar

Spanish judge Garzon convicted

by Darius Kadivar on

Spanish judge Garzon convicted (bbc)

Spain's most prominent judge, Baltasar Garzon, is found guilty of authorising illegal recordings of defence lawyers and banned from office for 11 years.


Red Wine


by Red Wine on

Right now i talked with a good spanish reporter friend and he told me The judges are not going to condemn him something hard and serious.

For this reason reporters think that judges are not going to allow more research (for now !) on topics related to General Franco.

We should wait...I am waiting.

Red Wine


by Red Wine on

Dear Ari,Judge Baltasar Garzon will face in the Supreme Court criminal prosecution for trespass. The Second Chamber has decided to admit a complaint procedure which is attributed to the famous judge a case of corruption star "blatant, willful, knowing and believing unpunished" for his role in the process initiated by the disappearance of people during the civil war and Franco.

The lawsuit will force to appear as a defendant Garzon before the Supreme Court holds that the National Court judge set up a "legal device"-referring to the cause for enforced disappearances during the Franco-"completely and utterly ignoring the established procedure, of non-retroactivity of criminal law, the 1977 amnesty law and their own actions and autos, which rejected as genocide the killings of Paracuellos Jarama.

"In short, he set up a procedure "aware of the illegality and incompetence incurred."

Ari Siletz

Did Garzon break the law?

by Ari Siletz on

Before investigating Spanish Civil War crimes for the purpose of prosecution (historical research OK), should he have worked to overturn the amnesty law agreed to (or benefiting) by both sides of the Civil War and, only if successful,  proceeded to investigate? Pinochet prosecution was made legal because it was ruled that he could only be charged for crimes committed after 1988--when the UN Criminal Justice Act was implemented. Argentine overturned its amnesty laws so that prosecution would become legal.

Red Wine


by Red Wine on

Garzon is a good man but very naive ! He has messed with powerful people and has been disrespectful to the King of Spain and the people who fought in the Spanish Civil War, in the band of the General Franco and what he has done with Pinochet was not a fair thing.

 Now he has to explain many things to Spanish justice and people are waiting for further explanation of his after a lot of money he earned.

Thank you Darius jan .