Dozens of Spanish Guàrdia Civil officers started giving evidence this week at the trial against pro-independence leaders. All were hidden from cameras in the courtroom and identified only by alpha-numeric code-names. The officers explained the different radis at Catalan Government’s offices which took place days before the 1-O and also some of the protests during the autumn 2017.
In fact, the 20th of September protest outside the Economy department and other official buildings in Barcelona started short after the raids began. One of the officers denied that those rallies were “festive” and described the protestors as “violent” and “agressive”. He said he and fellow officers were verbally insulted by people outside, but had no problems leaving the area, although not without threats: “I went down the street a few steps and the comments went from insults to death threats.”
The officer in charge of the raid on the foreign affairs ministry described the protesters as displaying “uncontrolled rage”.
“We decided to evacuate the judicial secretary [from the Economy department]. If that tumult broke into the department, the consequences could have been catastrophic“, said another official. The judicial secretary admitted “being afraid” of the situation and even requested a helicopter to leave the building. However, she could finally exit the building on foot, using a rear door.