Garzón in the dock

Spain's Franco-era probe judge Baltasar Garzon on trial


A high-profile Spanish judge has gone on trial accused of violating a 1977 amnesty law by investigating civil war and Franco-era crimes.

The prosecution of Baltasar Garzon, who famously indicted late Chilean leader Augusto Pinochet, has been brought by two right-wing groups.

They say he overstepped his powers by investigating the disappearance of 114,000 people between 1936 and 1975.

Human rights groups have described the Supreme Court trial as a scandal.

Source: BBC News


Vocabulary:

to probe -

to go/be on trial -

right-wing (adj) -

to overstep (powers) -

to deal with stg -

to drop (a case) -

to back sb -

the prosecutor / to prosecute -

to shelve stg -

to harm -

up to (20 years) -

a busybody -

a grave -

fierce (adj) -

to heed -

a wound -

to pin your hopes for stg on sb -

the court -

to amount to stg -

to bug (conversations) -

to pursue -

to set a date for stg -

to take bribes -

to seek (sought, sought) -

wrongdoing (n) -

fair (adj) -



 

Comments

Anonymous said…
Hi Graham:

I ´m sorry, I don ´t agree this post. I can ´t. The Supreme Court Spanish doesn ´t judge by investigating civil war and Franco-era crimes to judge Baltasar Garzón. It ´s false. It isn ´t the fact. The alleged crime is ignore the law that bans investigating, also, his boss prohibited two times and he never mind.

The another trial isn ´t by prosecute the corruption, it ´s by hear the conversation between lawyer and the accused in the prison. It ´s very serious. It ´s one of the most important human rights. Nobody can hear the conversation in prison. It ´s own of Nazism, dictatorship or backward countries.

The another trial it ´s by alleged corruption (prevaricación in Spanish), because he favoured to Banco Santander that paid a course in U. S. A.

The law is the same to a lot of people. The Supreme Court Spanish is the best in the technique and skills legal.

See you tomorrow. José.
Montse said…
Hi, Graham.
Many people don’t like judge Garzón neither he does. I think he was really brave opening all those trials against ETA, Pinochet or Bin Laden but when he wanted to do the same in his country they don’t allow him. I don’t think that the end justifies the means but I have the same feeling as when you are watching a film and you know that, in the end, the bad guy is going to get away with murder.
Graham said…
Hi José,

I'm not sure if I understand the first part of your comment well. Anyway, I'll DO MY BEST to correct what you wrote.

I don ´t AGREE WITH this post. I can ´t. ¿¿¿¿The Supreme Court in Spain doesn ´t judge civil war and Franco-era crimes investigated by judge Baltasar Garzón ????
It ´s false. It isn´t FACT The alleged crime is TO IGNORE the law that bans investigating, also, his boss TWICE PROHIBITED HIM FROM DOING SO BUT he DIDN'T FOLLOW HIS ORDERS.

THE SECOND trial (the other trial) isn't ABOUT CORRUPTION, it's ABOUT LISTENING INTO the conversation between a lawyer and the accused IN PRISON. It ´s very serious. It ´s one of the most important human rights. Nobody SHOULD LISTEN INTO CONVERSATIONS in prison. It BELONGS TO Nazism, dictatorships or backward countries.

The THIRD TRIAL IS FOR alleged corruption (prevaricación in Spanish), because he FAVOURED Banco Santander that PAID FOR a course in the U. S. A.

The law is the same FOR a lot of people. The Supreme Spanish Court is the best in ¿techniques?and LEGAL SKILLS.


What do you think the OUTCOME will be?
Graham said…
Hi Montse,

I think Garzón COMES ACROSS AS an unpleasant and arrogant individual. In trying to CREATE A NAME FOR HIMSELF, he thinks he is invincible and these trials are the inevitable OUTCOME of it all.

Many people don’t like judge Garzón. *
... but when he wanted to do the same in his country they DIDN'T allow him.

* neither he does - I'm not sure what you mean with this.
Neither does he = él tampoco , maybe you mean that he doesn't like many people either or simply, he has many enemies.
Montse said…
Sorry Graham, I meant “what he is doing (as a judge) .
I agree with you about he usually behaves like a “star” and, probably, this is the price he is going to pay for it, but do you really think that people like Pinochet don’t have to be punish what they did for in the past?
Anonymous said…
Good morning Graham:

Thank you very much. I think I ´m clumsy but I hope you have patience to I can learning English.

About what will be the outcome, I think that he will be to condemn by some trial. Independently the evidence of facts that the lawyers say the evidences are clear, Mr. Garzón has done something that it never can ´t do. He has called corrupt the Supreme Court Spanish and he has said the Spanish Justice isn ´t impartial and, also, he has said it in the most important international forums of Justice and around all the world.

See you soon.
Graham said…
Montse,

I think ex-leaders who committed crimes should be TRIED in the country where they once RULED. IT'S NOT UP TO judges like Garzón to PICK through, at their discretion, the long list of possible criminals around the world.


I agree with you THAT he usually behaves like a “star” and, probably, this is the price he is going to pay for it, but do you really think that people like Pinochet don’t have to BE PUNISHED FOR what they did in the past?
Graham said…
Hi José,

I like the word "clumsy"  /ˈklʌmzi/ . You shouldn't be so hard on yourself; learning a language requires time. There is no MAGIC WAND unfortunately.


I think I ´m clumsy but I hope you HAVE ENOUGH PATIENCE SO THAT I CAN LEARN English.

About what will be the outcome, I think that THE TIAL WILL FIND HIM GUILTY. The lawyers say the EVIDENCE IS clear, Mr. Garzón has done something that HE CAN NEVER DO. He has called the Spanish SUPREME COURT corrupt and he has said the Spanish Justice isn ´t impartial and, WHAT IS MORE, he has SAID SO in the most important international forums of Justice and ALL AROUND the world.
 

I hope your visit to the dentist's isn't so traumatic. Have a nice weekend and see you on Thursday.
Lucia said…
Hi! Graham,

I have read this article. It’s very hard to me and I agree with them

I write three paradoxical sentence what like me to the article:


Emilio Siva, President of the Association for the Recovery of Historical Memory  “For the first time those people will be able to tell before a court what the dictatorship did to them”

Reed Brody, a lawyer with the US-based group Human Rights Watch, said :

“It’s paradoxical that Judge Garzon should be put on trial for pursuing the crimes of dictatorship in his own country”
“Do the victims of Franco have less rights than the victims of Pinochet?"

Ah! I have learned too many new words..

Yesterday, It had a demonstration in Madrid to defend Garzon, I would like to go but I wasn't Madrid. I was in Caceres past weekend.

Bye, Lucía.
Graham said…
Hi Lucía,

I spent a weekend in Caceres a few years ago and really enjoyed it.


Don't try to learn all of the new words - be selective. I've put what I think are common or useful words in bold.


I have read this article. It’s very hard FOR ME and I agree with IT (= the article???)

HERE ARE three QUOTES FROM THE ARTICLE THAT I LIKE:


Ah! I have learned A LOT OF new words.. (TOO MANY gives the sentence a negative sense)

Yesterday, THERE WAS A demonstration in Madrid to defend Garzon, I WOULD LIKE TO HAVE GONE but I wasn't IN Madrid. I was in Caceres THIS WEEKEND.


You still haven't joined me in Facebook...


See you in a few hours!
Anonymous said…
Hi Graham and Lucia:

I think it ´s unbelievable. I Can ´t believe it. When a person has committed an alleged crime have to be judged. If afterwards the court finds guilty the people can or can ´t agree whit the sentence. To do a demonstration to avoid that a Spanish people was judged it isn´t the better way to do justice. All Spanish people are equal to law. I think the country doesn´t do justice is impossible this country progresses. It can´t have democracy and freedom if doesn ´t has justice. I think it doesn ´t occur in Scotland, France, Germany, USA, etc. What a pity. José.
Graham said…
Hi José,

It seems that this Garzón STIRS UP STRONG PRO AND ANTI FEELINGS.

I think it ´s unbelievable. I can´t believe it. (there is no need to repeat it :D)
WHENEVER a person HAS ALLEGEDLY committed a crime, THEY have to be TRIED. If the court THEN finds THEM guilty, PEOPLE CAN AGREE OR NOT WITH the sentence.

DEMONSTRATING AGAINST A SPANIARD GOING TO TRIAL ISN'T the BEST way to do justice. All Spanish people are EQUAL BEFORE THE LAW. I think IF A COUNTRY DOESN'T HAVE A FAIR JUSTICE SYSTEM, THEN IT DOESN'T PROGRESS AND IT can´t have democracy OR freedom.

I DON'T THINK IT OCCURS in Scotland, France, Germany, USA, etc.


See you in the morning!