Wikileaks

El Gobierno intentó acelerar el 'caso Carrascosa'

Cable en el que España pide a EE UU que medie en el 'caso Carrascosa'

  • El cable revela que Zapatero fue un mero espectador de las gestiones de Sarkozy en Chad.
  • El secretario de Estado reconoce que Zapatero "no tiene buen aspecto desde el incidente".
  • EE UU explica que el poder Ejetucivo no puede influir en las decisiones de los jueces.
  • La embajada acusa a España de mantener una postura "muy sentimental" con este tema.
ID:
129361
Etiquetas:
KOCI, PREL, CASC, SP
Fecha:
2007-11-08 19:29:00
RefID:
07MADRID2093
Origen:
Embassy Madrid
Clasificación:
CONFIDENTIAL
Destino:
07MADRID2041
07MADRID597
Encabezado:
VZCZCXRO1914
PP RUEHAG RUEHROV
DE RUEHMD #2093/01 3121929
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 081929Z NOV 07
FM AMEMBASSY MADRID
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 3774
INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE
RUEHLA/AMCONSUL BARCELONA 3169
RUEAWJA/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MADRID 002093

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR L, CA/OCS/CI AND EUR/WE

E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/07/2017
TAGS: KOCI, PREL, CASC, SP
SUBJECT: SPANISH AGAIN BRING UP CARRASCOSA CASE AND MAY
RAISE WITH LEGAL ADVISOR

REF: A. MADRID 2041
B. MADRID 597

MADRID 00002093 001.2 OF 002

Classified By: DCM HUGO LLORENS FOR REASONS 1.4 (B) AND (C)

1. (C) The DCM met November 5 with Secretary of State for
Justice Julio Perez Hernandez to thank him for Spain's
efforts in the Al-Kassar extradition case (REFTEL A). Perez
Hernandez raised during the meeting Spain's continuing
concern over the long-running case of Maria Jose Carrascosa,
a Spanish attorney from Valencia held in a New Jersey prison
since November 2006 for contempt of court after failing to
produce her daughter before a New Jersey court. Perez
Hernandez said he was considering asking Spanish Ambassador
to the U.S. Carlos Westendorp to raise the matter in
Washington with the Department's Legal Advisor. The DCM
explained to Perez Hernandez that the Department was not in a
position to persuade the judge to withdraw his contempt
citation. Separately, Spanish press reported on November 6
that Carrascosa's sister has asked President Zapatero to
intervene on her sister's behalf and would be meeting with
officials at Spain's Ministry of Justice on November 8 to
discuss the case.

//BACKGROUND//

2. (C) Maria Jose Carrascosa removed her daughter, [eliminado por 20minutos.es], from New Jersey and the United States in violation of
New Jersey law and an existing parenting agreement that
stated [eliminado por 20minutos.es] was not to leave the U.S. A Spanish court in
Valencia denied the father's request, under the Hague
International Child Abduction Convention, to return the child
to the U.S. That decision was upheld on appeal. Carrascosa
then returned to New Jersey to continue litigating the
divorce. She was ordered to produce [eliminado por 20minutos.es], fled, was
arrested in New York, and jailed for contempt of court until
she complies with the court's ruling and produces her
daughter. Her "habeas corpus" petition was denied in Federal
Court in February. In an unusual move, the judge agreed to
rehear the petition and allowed her lawyers to file "amicus"
briefs. On May 14, the petition was again denied. In the
decision, the judge extensively quoted Spanish Hague legal
expert Elisa Perez-Vera in support of the New Jersey Court's
ruling that the Spanish court exceeded its authority under
the Convention and therefore the New Jersey court was not
bound by its decision. Carrascosa's family made many false
statements to the Spanish press about her confinement
conditions. Carrascosa's sister and father told Spanish
media that she was not receiving proper medical care for a
thyroid condition and that, "the U.S. is treating her worse
than the ones held in Guantanamo." The Embassy has
consistently maintained that Carrascosa was being treated
well and receiving all necessary medication.

3. (U) The Ministry of Justice released a statement on
November 5 expressing its, "concern for the regrettable
situation that a Spanish citizen has suffered for several
months." However, the release said that the Spanish
government was not a party to this judicial process and thus
had limited room to act. The MOJ stressed that it had done
and was doing everything it could for Carrascosa (calling its
actions "irreproachable"), but said it would carefully
analyze the most recent petitions made to it by the inmate's
family. The GOS' stated goal is to find a solution that
would allow Carrascosa to leave prison, find an amicable
solution with her ex-husband, and allow [eliminado por 20minutos.es] to have
access to both of her parents. The press release further
conveyed the government's view that the current situation
facing Carrascosa ("indefinite jail time") was
disproportionate, and that young [eliminado por 20minutos.es] was the one who has
suffered the most. The MOJ statement also correctly mentions
that the Spanish government made available to Carrascosa,
free of charge, one of the best mediation attorneys in Spain,
but that Carrascosa had rejected any offer of mediation.

//COMMENT//

4. (C) The Carrascosa case has received sensational press
coverage in Spain and has generated negative feelings towards
the U.S. The Spanish reaction to this case has not been
based on reason or judicial arguments, but is a very
emotional one based on photos of "a mother in chains." The
Embassy, Children's Issues, U.S. Federal and State judges,
and the Spanish Ministry of Justice, have all urged mediation
between the parents. We have constantly told the Spanish
that this is a tragic example of the breakup of a family, but
it is a matter for the courts. We have said that, just as in
Spain, the Executive Branch cannot attempt to influence the

MADRID 00002093 002.2 OF 002

judges' decisions. Per REFTEL B, Ambassador Aguirre told
Justice Minister Bermejo in April that, as in many
contentious divorce cases, there are two sides to the story,
and that the Spanish press had greatly skewed this story and
portrayed Carrascosa solely as the victim. He also said that
Carrascosa herself had exhibited some erratic behavior, such
as changing her legal team on numerous occasions and
rejecting any and all offers of mediation or compromise. We
do not agree with those Spanish officials who maintain that
this is a Hague case and who cannot comprehend that an
individual in our common law system can be jailed for
contempt of court--a civil, rather than criminal matter.

5. (C) We believe that the GOS' renewed interest in the
Carrascosa case is due in part to recent events surrounding a
Spanish airline crew detained in Chad. Spanish and French
citizens were detained earlier this month on charges of
suspected kidnapping related to a NGO's efforts to fly 103
children to France, and the Spanish government was unable to
win their release. It took action and negotiation from
French President Sarkozy to free three French journalists and
four Spanish flight attendants. Sarkozy and his personal
plane dropped off the flight attendants in Madrid on November
4 en route to Paris, an event that was greeted by scorn and
derision from virtually all sectors of the Spanish political
spectrum who said this marked a failure in Zapatero's foreign
policy and his inability to support Spanish citizens detained
abroad. Indeed, Perez Hernandez admitted to the DCM on
November 5 that President Zapatero "had not looked very good"
after this event and asked what the U.S. could do to help
Carrascosa. We believe the GOS will come under increasing
pressure from Carrascosa's family and supporters to "do
something" and to obtain results. We would expect Ambassador
Westendorp to contact the Department's Legal Advisor in the
near future to once again plead this case. Our response to
all inquiries should be to urge mediation and compromise,
which Carrascosa has rejected. In July, Peter Innes, the
father, made a settlement offer which would allow [eliminado por 20minutos.es] to
remain in Spain, visit him in the U.S. twice a year, and
allow him to visit [eliminado por 20minutos.es] in Spain twice a year.
Carrascosa summarily rejected this offer.
AGUIRRE;"