HUMAN rights observers are attending the trial of controversial judge Baltazar Garzon today as he faces charges for investigating the disappearance of over 100,000 people during Franco’s regime.
Right-wing prosecuters Manos Limpias argue that since the crimes were covered by the 1977 amnesty, Garzon was exceeding his authority by looking into them.
Representatives from Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the International Commission of Jurists will attend the proceedings at the Supreme Court.
It is the second of three trials Garzon is facing.
Last week he was in the dock for illegally recording conversations between lawyers and clients in a Spanish political corruption case, and has yet to be sentenced.
If convicted he could be removed from court for up to 20 years.
“I’m optimistic,” Garzon said before last week’s trial. “If everything goes as it should, I will be found not guilty.”
Garzon, 56, worked as an investigative judge for several years, working on cases involving the governments of Israel and China, Basque terrorist group Eta, drug clans and investigations into torture on detainees at Guantanamo Bay.
He made world news after ordering the arrest of Chile’s ex-dictator General Pinochet in London.