Évora court to make final decision on whether Cabrita will stand trial

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The Évora Court of Appeal (TRE) will definitively decide whether or not former minister Eduardo Cabrita will stand trial in the case of the fatal hit-and-run on Highway 6 (A6), two lawyers revealed today.

The case is back before the TRE because of appeals against the decision, which opted not to put the former minister on trial, lodged by the Association of Self-Mobilized Citizens (ACA-M) and the family of the worker who was fatally run over.

“In this case, the TRE will decide definitively whether or not Dr. Eduardo Cabrita will stand trial. This decision will be definitive,” stressed ACA-M’s lawyer, Paulo Graça, in statements to the Lusa news agency.

The family’s lawyer, José Joaquim Barros, also pointed out that “after this decision [by the TRE], there is no longer any recourse”.

The TRE has already ruled on two appeals, one of which was filed by the ACA-M after the criminal investigating judge rejected its request to open an investigation (RAI) into Eduardo Cabrita.

The other, brought by the victim’s family, was aimed at the same decision by the investigating judge who rejected the RAI to hold Eduardo Cabrita and, in this case, his head of security, Nuno Dias, responsible.

At the time, in March 2023, the then Évora judges ruled that the ex-minister “was in a position to at least tell the driver to comply with the traffic rules” and sent the case back to the pre-trial stage, with the ex-governor once again not being sentenced, which prompted these new appeals.

In the case of ACA-M, which has been appointed as an assistant, lawyer Paulo Graça said that the association has already been notified that the case has been referred to the Évora Court of Appeal.

Consulted by Lusa, the distribution of cases at the TRE, on the Citius justice portal, indicates that the appeal was filed in that court last Monday and that the draw was made on the same day.

The panel that will decide ACA-M’s appeal has judge Fernando Pina as its rapporteur, it can be read.

Lawyer José Joaquim Barros also told Lusa that he had been notified that the case was already before the TRE.

Lusa could not find on the Citius portal the distribution of the case in which the appellant is the family, and both lawyers admitted that the two appeals may be together.

The appeals request that the former Minister of Internal Affairs be brought to trial, in opposition to the decision not to indict Cabrita signed in mid-November 2023 by the investigating judge Marcos Ramos.

The investigative decision is in line with the position of the Public Prosecutor’s Office, known in October 2023, when it argued that the former minister should not be sentenced for the crime of negligent homicide and the crime of dangerous driving, because there was insufficient evidence.

In addition, Judge Marcos Ramos decided not to put the former governor’s head of security, Nuno Dias, on trial.

On June 18, 2021, Nuno Santos, an employee of a company that was carrying out maintenance work on the A6 in the municipality of Évora, was fatally hit by the car in which the then Minister of Internal Affairs was driving.

As for the driver of the car, Marco Pontes, he has been sentenced to stand trial for committing a crime of homicide by gross negligence in competition with “an administrative offense classified as serious” under the Highway Code.

However, the judge decided not to indict Marco Pontes for the crime of dangerous driving.

Hervé Hubert
Hervé Hubert
Hervé Hubert is a 55-year-old writer and journalist based in Porto, Portugal. Born in France, he brings a unique blend of French and Portuguese perspectives to his work. Education Hervé studied Journalism and Literature at the University of Lyon in France. After completing his studies, he gained valuable experience working with various French media outlets (Portugal France also). Career He worked for several years as a journalist in France before making the move to Portugal. In Porto, he joined the Portugal Pulse team as a staff writer. Skills Hervé specializes in storytelling, investigative journalism, and cultural commentary. He has a flair for capturing complex issues in a relatable way. Personal Life He currently resides in Porto and enjoys the city's rich culture, from Fado music to Francesinha cuisine. Hervé continues to maintain strong ties to his French heritage, often traveling back to France for family visits and cultural exploration. With his unique background and diverse skill set, Hervé Hubert adds a layered, multicultural lens to every story he covers.

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