Spanish Supreme Court Judge Pablo Llareno has overturned international arrest and extradition warrants for Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont and four other members of the local government, who were ousted by Madrid and fled to Belgium.
The court stated that individual arrest warrants do not technically cover crimes committed by the former officials as part of a larger group.
In passing the decision, the judge also noted that the Catalan politicians have expressed their "intention to return to Spain" in order to participate in the upcoming elections that are scheduled for the 21st of December.
Over 90% of the Catalans voted in favor of leaving Spain on the 1st of October 2017.
Later that month, the Catalan Parliament voted in favor of the official declaration of independence from Spain.
Instead of seeking a political compromise, the Spanish Government dissolved Puigdemont's government, assuming direct control over the breakaway region, sparking a major constitutional crisis.
The pro-independence Catalan leaders were charged sedition, rebellion and embezzlement of State funds and had to flee to Brussels in order to avoid spending decades in prison.
Despite the formal withdrawal of international arrest warrants, Puigdemont and his colleagues may still face arrest, when they voluntarily return to Spain.
Two senior Catalan politicians, including Puigdemont's Vice-President Oriol Junqueras, are still being held in a Spanish prison.