Read in Catalan

The attacks by groups of the Spanish extreme right against Catalan and pro-independence symbology, and sometimes against citizens, especially in small towns and municipalities, was a common occurrence in Catalonia between 2017 and 2018. Adam Majó, director of the Office of Civil and Political Rights, demanded that the political and judicial authorities put an end to it, and detailed the most relevant cases.

This Thursday, January 13th, the Provincial Court of Barcelona will judge three sympathizers of the far-right party Democracia Nacional for insulting and assaulting three Balsareny neighbours, the owners of bar El Casino and a young man, in 2018, while shouting "fucking independentists". The public prosecutor of the Hate Crimes and Discrimination service asks for six years in prison for each of them, two men and a woman, considering them perpetrators of three crimes against fundamental rights as well as a crime against moral integrity, and a minor crime of injury. The trial will be held in the 7th section of the Provincial Court.

The aggression

The aggression happened on February 17th, 2018, when the collective ‘Por España me atrevo’ called for a demonstration in Balsareny with banners, drums and flags of the extremist party. Around half past eight in the evening, after the demonstration —according to the prosecutor's indictment— the accused, accompanied by other unidentified persons, all of them of skinheads, met with some people who were at the terrace of bar El Casino, including the owner of the premises and her husband, and "acting in common agreement and moved by their deep contempt for people related to Catalan independence, inferring that the people in the bar supported the independence movement, vexed and humiliated them."

The prosecutor details that they spat on them and insulted them, “Fucking independentists, sons of bitches, pigs, filth”. One of the accused kicked one of the neighbours, who was able to dodge, and then punched him in the face. Meanwhile, the accused woman insulted the bar owner by calling her "red, separatist, fat, bastard" and the third defendant gave her a slap that made her fall to the ground, without causing her "objectifiable injuries." When the victims tried to take refuge inside the bar, one of the accused grabbed a young man who was there and threatened him: "And where are you going? Fucking Catalan, we are going to cut you". They kicked him in the back and another one hit him in the head with a flag pole, which caused him minor injuries.

After the aggression, the owner of the bar assured the Mossos d'Esquadra Catalan police that they had not said anything to provoke such a reaction. The neighbours organised a demonstration against the fascist aggressions.

In view of these facts, the prosecutor Miguel Ángel Aguilar accuses the three extremists of three crimes against fundamental rights as well as a crime against moral integrity, and for each crime he asks for two years in prison. That is, a total of six years in prison for each of them. In addition, they must pay a fine of 10,800 euros, and they will not be able to work in the educational field for five years. Finally, they must compensate each of the three victims with 1,200 euros, and the young man with an extra 175 euros for the injuries.


Main picture: Protest of the neighbours of Balsareny / ACN