A former police commissioner in Spain’s National Police Corps Jose Manuel Villarejo hinted on Tuesday that the attack on August 17, 2017 in Catalonia was the result of a “serious mistake” by the former National Intelligence Service (CNI) director Feliz Sanz Roldan.
According to the details, Villarejo, who has never hidden his enmity with Sanz Roldan, made this surprising revelation during the second day of his interrogation in the trial that was held before the National Court. The commissioner assured that then he had to work with the secret service to “try to fix the mess” of that event despite the fact that he has admitted that when the events occurred he had already retired for more than a year and, therefore, was not active .
“I have continued working with the CNI until the last day. I was working with them to try to fix the entanglement of the famous Ripoll imam attack, which in the end was a serious mistake by Mr. Sanz Roldán, who miscalculated the consequences to give Catalonia a little scare,” revealed Villarejo.
The former commissioner said he could prove everything he had claimed: “All the evidence is in my archives. I authorise their release. We must think that the citizenry is not a minor and the law of secrets cannot be used to hide everything. It is an obsolete Francoist law from 1968.”
25'' que hielan la sangre.
Exigiremos explicaciones y las exigiremos hasta el final. pic.twitter.com/g4PNehVSl5
— Gabriel Rufián (@gabrielrufian) January 11, 2022
His claims triggered anger in Catalonia, where the government was considering a legal response. Catalan President Peres Aragones said on social media: “17-A was a barbarity that has marked us forever. And if Villarejo’s words are true, explanations are needed now. We know very well how the state sewers work, so we demand that they be investigated in order to clarify the truth.”
“I have also asked the legal services of the Generalitat de Catalunya [Government of Catalonia] to study these statements and the relevant legal actions that can be taken. For the truth. For the victims, for the Catalans and for all those who are on the side of peace and democracy,” the Catalan President added.
Last September 2019, the National Court decided not to investigate the links of the Ripoll imam with the CNI because they did not consider it necessary to resolve whether there was any relationship with the alleged mastermind of the terrorist operation and the Spanish intelligence service.
However, after the attacks there was evidence of lack of coordination and disloyalty among the police forces with the exclusion of the Mossos d’Esquadra from both the Intelligence Center for Counter-Terrorism and Organized Crime (CITCO) and Europol.
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