FORMER president of Catalunya, Carles Puigdemont, is set to appear in court today after he was arrested in Germany on Sunday.
He will appear in front of a German judge and the court will decide if he is to remain in custody with pending extradition proceedings.
News of his detainment sparked a wave of violent riots in Catalunya, leaving more than 50 people injured and four arrested.
After five months on the run from Spanish authorities, Puigdemont was intercepted on the motorway near the Danish border by German police.
He was reportedly travelling from Finland to Belgium after meeting with Finnish legislators in Helsinki.
A European arrest warrant was was reactivated by a Spanish Supreme Court on Friday, in which he is wanted on charges of rebellion, misuse of public funds and sedition over his involvement in the Catalunya referendum in October, for which he could face a prison sentence of up to 30 years.
Spain’s state prosecutor office said it had been in contact with German authorities in an attempt to catch Puigdemont and extradite him to Spain.
Within hours of the news breaking, thousands took to the streets of Barcelona and neighbouring cities to protest Puigdemont’s arrest.
Police were seen striking protesters with batons, as the crowd made its way towards the German consulate and the Spanish government’s representative, while blocking off major roads.
Although Catalan pro-independence parties called for peaceful demonstrations, the night took a turn for the worse as hundreds attempted to break through police cordons, throwing street barriers and burning rubbish bins.
It comes after the region of Catalunya unilaterally declared independence from Spain after an illegal referendum vote in October.
Puigdemont was then fired by Spanish authorities and fled to Belgium, before charges were made against him and other members of his party.
Catalan parliament was then dissolved and the region has since been under direct rule from Madrid.
- SHOP TO THE TOP: How did new Andalucia leader Juanma Moreno go from green grocer’s assistant to Junta boss? - 2 Feb, 2019 @ 12:00
- CANDY CRUSH: 400 of biggest brands in Spain set for huge sugar tax in bid to improve health - 2 Feb, 2019 @ 11:00
- British aristocrat ‘entirely unaware’ he had 7th century Spanish ornaments rotting away in back garden - 2 Feb, 2019 @ 10:00
- Spain will AGAIN fight for shared sovereignty over Gibraltar after Brexit - 29 Jan, 2019 @ 20:45
- British pensioners in Spain to lose free healthcare under no-deal Brexit - 29 Jan, 2019 @ 18:06
- Why the ancient Treasure of Guarrazar was ditched in a field in Spain - 27 Jan, 2019 @ 14:00
- Pioneering surgery performed on ‘inoperable’ patient with pancreatic cancer in Spain - 27 Jan, 2019 @ 10:00
- HEROES: These are the eight specialist miners working round-the-clock to rescue little Julen in Malaga - 25 Jan, 2019 @ 23:50
- Rescuers resume digging to reach little Julen after completing fourth controlled explosion in Malaga - 25 Jan, 2019 @ 23:02
- JULEN UPDATE: Two hours before miners in Malaga can resume digging - 25 Jan, 2019 @ 21:03