Anybody is more aware of the sort of state where we are living when something like this happens to ourselves or to a friend. Very often we hear or read about police brutality and their well known impunity, but the effect is higher when the attacked person is not a strange in the news, but a good friend.
|photo by Julian Kliner – Creative Commons|
I’ll name him José K. Obviously, to avoid retaliation from the assailants I will not show his real name nor will give many details as date, place, town, where the attack happened.
José K. was with his wife in the terrace of a bar, when a squad of cops arrived, and announced a search (drugs, inmigrants, muslims, reds? who knows, anyway they found nothing). The cops ordered everyone there to come into the bar.
It is told that, in this country, police officers in this kind of operations and in demonstrations or protests often act with a suspicious overexcitement, an excitation that doesn’t seem natural, to say the least. We can’t say the reason, because to say what anyone may suspect is a crime, but that doesn’t eliminate the suspicion. This case wasn’t the exception.
José K. stood up and orally refused to come into, just that; he didn’t offer physical resistance, didn’t try to go away, didn’t insult them, simply told that he wasn’t going to come into because he was doing nothing. It was enough for them, the pack of cops jumped over him, pushed him, made him to lay down on the ground, handcuffed him and beat him during some minutes. Of course, spending the usual brutality that this species enjoy spending.
|photo from anticapitalistes.net|
My friend isn’t used to this kind of assaults, and he needed to be carried to a hospital, where he was hospitalized (and watched) the whole night. Probably the cops usually wouldn’t have carried him to the hospital, but here is recent other case, when a pack of cops arrested a man in Barcelona and beat him in the street, cuffed already, during 15 minutes until his death: Police brutality video angers Barcelona.
The second part of this story was when José K. had to testify before the judge. The cops made up a tale in which my friend was a mixture of Steven Seagal and Arnold Schwarzenegger, wildly attacking the squad of eight!!! cops. But luckily they, showing a great bravery and training, got to defend themselves and subdue José K. This sounds ridiculous, but it’s the tale that cops here tell each time that a platoon of cops beat a single citizen: he/she attacked with his/her bare hands a group of eight or ten armed police officers, and they had no choice but to defend themselves.
And judges believe -pretend to believe- the cops. Judges know what they must do, if they don’t want to be punished like the judge Baltasar Garzón, banned in 2012 because he started to investigate crimes of the fascist dictator Franco (Spanish judge Baltasar Garzón debarred for 11 years). Or like the judge Elpidio Silva, removed in 2013 when he was investigating a corruption case of a banker, linked with the political party ruling at this moment (Spain no country for judges, says graft case magistrate)
The lawyer of José K. told him that it’s not worth to make a report against them, a complaint just would worsen the case. It’s a well known fact that here complaints against police lose in a 99% of cases; and the remaining 1%, government reprieve every convicted cop. For example, five police officers convicted of torture in 2012, and quickly reprieved: Pardon granted to police officers convicted of torture in Spain. It doesn’t matter what they do, cops aren’t imprisoned in this country. Period.
Police impunity here is so obvious that some victims have made report against Spanish police officers in Argentina, and an Argentinian judge has asked for their extradition to be tried there (Spain suspects in torture case fight extradition). Also Argentinian judges are investigating cases of torture, murder and dissapearance of Franco’s political opponents (Argentinian judge petitions Spain to try civil war crimes of Franco), the same that Baltasar Garzón tried to do in Spain until he was debarred. There isn’t justice in Spain and European Union institutions look the other way, but victims have got help from Argentinian people.
|photo by Leo Reynolds – Creative Commons|
This is Spain, still hoping to become a democracy some day. But the wait is so long… and also we aren’t closer than 30 years ago, but further, each day a bit worse in social, political and economic aspects.
Un abrazo, José K.