By CIARÁN GILES
MADRID (AP) — Spain’s top court has handed down a ruling preventing the upper house of Parliament from voting on a controversial amendment to the country’s penal code. That represents unprecedented interference in the legislature and foreshadows potential political turmoil for the leftist coalition government heading into election year. The Constitutional Court late Monday accepted an appeal by the main right-wing opposition Popular Party to halt the passage through Parliament of a package of a reform on how judges are elected to certain judicial bodies, including the Constitutional Court itself. The decision is the first of its type in Spain’s democracy and could have untold effects on future legislative procedures.