July 9, 2020

Mexico City Congress approves law against digital sexual violence

The Congress of Mexico City unanimously approved Tuesday reforms to the Criminal Code to punish digital sexual violence, which establish sentences of up to six years in jail for those who share intimate images of another person without their consent.

The Olimpia Law, named after the name of the activist from the state of Puebla who initiated the fight at the national level, typifies as a crime against sexual intimacy to record, photograph and disseminate images or messages "of intimate sexual content" of another person "without your consent or through deception. "

"Punishing digital violence against women is already a reality in our city. Sexting is not the problem, but the violation of privacy and intimacy. It is not no. Consent makes a difference." local deputy Jannete Guerrero said on Twitter after the vote.

With this measure, Mexico City joins 14 other Mexican territorial entities that had already passed the Olimpia Law or some similar initiative that punishes the so-called "pornovenganza".

The fight for the law began in 2014 in the central Mexican state of Puebla, where activist Olimpia Coral Melo suffered from digital violence when a video began to circulate on social networks in which she, at just 18, had sex with her boyfriend .

"We did it together. With 56 votes in favor, our reform is approved. This is not thanks to me, but thanks to my sisters, to all of us, to whom we decided that fear will change sides. And tremble!" Tuesday the activist in her social networks.

The initiative, which also reforms the Law of Access of Women to a Life Free of Violence, contemplates as aggravating factors that the culprit be familiar or have a relationship of courtship, marriage or work with the victim.

On the other hand, it establishes sentences of between four and six years in jail to those who require an image of sexual content to a child under 18 years.

The president of the Political Coordination Board of the Congress of Mexico City, Mauricio Tabe, acknowledged the work of activists to unite all political forces in favor of the same cause.

"I think the city needs much more (to punish) infractions and fewer words. And this is a step forward in favor of women," said the legislator after the vote before activists gathered at the legislative headquarters.

However, despite recognizing the intention of the reform, some civil society groups questioned the consequences of the new criminal types because they could create a risk of revictimization.

"We do not agree with punitivism and criminal populism as appropriate strategies to effectively eradicate various behaviors that are intended to criminalize the so-called 'crime against sexual intimacy," the Network in Defense of Digital Rights (R3D) said in a statement. ).

Instead of typifying new crimes and increasing penalties, R3D suggested "privileging" dialogue with digital platforms to improve reporting mechanisms and promote better access to information and guidance.

During the discussion of the initiative, the deputy Miguel Ángel Salazar acknowledged that "justice operators are not trained", so he urged that the new regulations "not be in dead letter".

. (tagsToTranslate) Congress (t) City (t) Mexico (t) approves (t) violence

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