Convicted of slandering some policemen but acquitted of disobedience after the annulment of the state of alarm

A court in Palma has sentenced Pedro Bartolomé H. O for a crime of slander with publicity against the four national policemen whom he recorded while falsely accusing them of having entered the house without permission in which a party was being held in full confinement . The convict, however, is freed from the most serious crime, that of disobedience, due to the annulment of the state of alarm issued by the Constitutional Court on July 14, according to the ruling, to which has had access.

The magistrate who dictates the sentence resolves that the "declaration of unconstitutionality" of the rule that legitimized the agents to request the documentation and sanction Pedro Bartolomé H. O "deprives legal support" for his action and, therefore, cannot be condemned for disobedience. According to the same argument, the Prosecutor's Office had already withdrawn the accusation for serious disobedience, which, however, was maintained by the private accusations, two Police unions that represented the agents.

For the crime of slander with advertising, the head of the Criminal Court number 6 of Palma, Juana Ana Arbona Ginard, sentenced Pedro Bartolome O. H to a fine of fourteen months at six euros per day, to compensate each of the police with 3,000 euros for civil liability, as well as the payment of costs.

The events date back to May 20, 2020 when a neighbor alerted the National Police at dawn of the noise that a party was causing in a house in the building where she resides in Palma de Mallorca. What happened next went viral in just hours on social networks and from there it jumped to various media. Pedro Bartolomé records the four agents who require the documentation inside the house while he repeatedly accuses them of a crime for having accessed it without the resident's permission.

The sentence establishes proven that the agents entered the home with the permission of the resident, named Albert, as he recognized in court and confirmed by a neighbor. Albert assured at the hearing that he only gave the police permission to access the room and that they searched drawers and cabinets. The police denied an exhaustive search, only the one necessary to find Pedro Bartolomé hidden under the bed and a girl in the closet of that same room. Another young woman, the fourth person present in the home, slept in another room.

In the images, the condemned man claims to be a lawyer and repeatedly tells the police to leave the apartment because they cannot ask for his identification inside a home. According to the judge, the inhabitant appears “indecisive, insecure and a resounding no is not heard for an answer, but it is Pedro himself who says 'it is not true', 'you have not authorized' and 'get out of here'.

Interviews in State of Alarm, Antena 3 and Okdiario

In the trial, Pedro Bartolomé assured that he sent the video to a WhatsApp group in which about twenty people participate because among them there are civil guards and policemen and he wanted to ask their opinion about what happened. The judge considers that it is not proven that he was the one who released the recording to social networks in which the agents were perfectly recognized. The next episode is the interview that the condemned man offers to the far-right website Estado de Alarma and then to Okdiario and Espejo Público, an Antena 3 space. In all of them he again attributes a crime to the police.

At the hearing, he also said that only two or three weeks later he found out, through the mouth of the inhabitant of the house, that he had agreed to allow the agents to enter the apartment. “In the three interviews carried out by the accused, it was repeatedly stated, and with knowledge of its falsehood, that the Police officers had entered the home without any type of authorization and that therefore they had committed a crime and acknowledging their refusal to identify themselves”, collects the ruling.,

In the interviews, as he does during the recording, he continued to defend that he had not broken the state of alarm because he lived at home, which he later confessed in court that it was not true and that he did break the confinement to go to a birthday party. birthday in the worst scenario of the pandemic.

"It is clear that the very account of the proven facts allows the existence of compensable moral damage to be deduced, since the moral damage arises from the criminal action itself and from the seriousness of the accusations against the injured parties," the ruling states. And he adds: “It is obvious that they produced a relevant and significant impairment of the moral integrity of the recipients of the slander, by exposing these verses before public opinion to the doubts that such manifestations arose about their professionalism and correct exercise of functions. like cops."

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