Fines that were handed out during the Lockdown between the 14th of March and the 21st of June will be reimbursed in full. Furthermore, all those fines still in the pipeline will be cancelled.
One thing is the intention of reimbursing the sums paid over and quite another is knowing how they are going to achieve it.
The reason that there is doubt about how it will be done is because the fines were handed out by different administrations/ministries.
What is also in doubt is whether the money will be returned automatically or whether you will have to apply for reimbursement.
All this has come about because the PP challenged the legality of using the Estado de Alarma before the Constitutional Court, which declared this application as “anticonstitutional.” The said court considered that the Government should have declared an Estado de Exception (Martial Law) in order to impose a curfew and confine people to their homes.
In the province of Granada, the Policía Nacional and the Guardia Civil handed out almost 19,000 fines. The various municipal police forces (Policía Local) handed out another thousand.
However, only between five and six percent of those fined were officially notified and ended up being paid, so we’re talking about approximately 1,000 fines paid (out of the 20,000) the majority of whom paid promptly and only had to pay 50% of the fine. Finally, the vast majority of fines were for 600 euros, meaning that 300 euros were paid over.
Editorial comment: it is widely considered that the said court is controlled by the PP who allegedly use it for political gains. The fact is that to impose Martial Law it has to be debated in the Parliament, which could have taken days or more and then approved with a two-thirds majority, whereas the Estado de Alarma could be imposed immediately, using a Royal Decree, with a maximum duration of two weeks, after which further extention would have to be approved in Parliament.
In other words, the E.d.A, was the fastest and surest way of acting promptly to combat the spread of contagion.
Secondly, the Estado de Excepción is used to counter civil unrest, rioting or a domestic attempt to overthrow the Government, which were certainly not the circumstances, thus the E.d.E would not have been legal. The E.d.A. was conceived by the lawmakers who drew up the Spanish Consititution to counter health/medical emergencies, requiring immediate action without delay getting it through the Parliament.
In other words, the sentence handed down by the Constitutional Court was completely illogical and politically motivated.
Finally, in case readers consider that the political control of the high courts is a flight of fancy, the Spokesman for the PP in the Senate, Ignacio Cosidó, admitted in a Whatsapp text message that with the election of a PP-complicit judge, his party could control Court Two of the Supreme Court “via the back door.“