Sunday, October 1, 2023

It is beginning to break the wall of silence and impunity

For the first time, a Spanish court has heard the lawsuit brought by a victim of police torture during the Franco dictatorship. For just over an hour and a half, Julio Pacheco and Rosa María García told a judge in the Plaza de Castilla in Madrid about the torture that the former allegedly suffered in 1975 at the hands of several police officers from the Political-Social Brigade. “It begins to break the wall of silence and impunity that we have against the Franco regime,” Pacheco explained at the exit.

For the first time in Spain, a victim of torture by the Franco regime testified before a judge


The applicant was surrounded by fifty people with banners and messages against impunity for the crimes of the dictatorship and a mural with the message “Let’s break the wall of impunity.” It was the second attempt by Pacheco and García to tell a judge what had happened in 1975: their final testimony was suspended, although it was scheduled for last July.

Until now, Pacheco and other victims of police torture during the dictatorship could only explain the events on the other side of the Atlantic when Argentine judge María Servini decided to open an investigation that ended with several failed attempts to extradite police commanders at the time. .

The two achieved this today in Court 50 in Madrid, which is investigating whether the retired commissioner José Manuel Villarejo and other agents were involved in torture against this complainant. “The first time that a judge listens to you and hears you in court means that maybe there is more, that the matter will open up in some way and achieve justice in the Spanish state, I have that hope, I think we will “Go slowly, but the first step has been taken,” Pacheco explained at the exit.

This statement, planned for July last year, was attended not only by the responsible public prosecutor and the chairman of the court, but also by a representative of the public prosecutor’s office who specializes in democratic memory, but who, however, did not ask questions during interrogations and limited himself to taking notes.

In recent years, various complaints and lawsuits regarding crimes allegedly committed during the dictatorship have been admitted to processing, but have not had success since the judges consider that the facts are time-barred or will be directly neutralized by the amnesty of 1977. In this sense, Pacheco hopes , that the 50th Court of Madrid is now summoning the accused police officers to testify so that he can interrogate them.

Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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