Around 3,000 people, including 400 mayors from all across Catalonia and all the members of the Catalan government, gathered in front of the Palace of Justice in Barcelona, Thursday, to support Catalan President Artur Mas as he went before a judge to face charges of civil disobedience and the misuse of public funds whilst organising the non-binding vote on Catalan Independence on November 9, 2014. People waved 'Esteladas,' the unofficial Catalan pro-independence flag, and chanted slogans hailing the independence of Catalonia while cheered the Catalan president as he walked to the court. In a press conference held after his hearing, Mas declared himself "responsible for taking the political initiative" that led to the "participatory process of 9 November." The Catalan president said that it was "unbelievable" that the central powers in Spain viewed the vote as a crime. November's referendum was a non-binding vote on the eventual independence of Catalonia that was held by the government of Catalonia on 9 November 2014. Although it was suspended by the Constitutional Court of Spain, the Catalan government pushed forward with the referendum in defiance of the ruling. More than 2 million Catalans took part with 80 percent voting in favour of secession from Spain.
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