October 21, 2020

The Supreme Court reduces the sentence of the teacher from Gaztelueta from eleven to two years despite considering the “continued” sexual abuse proven


The Supreme Court has largely upheld the appeal filed by the defense of the professor of the Opus Dei male college in Leioa Gaztelueta, the numerary José María Martínez Sanz, and has reduced the sentence from 11 to 2 years in prison. conviction imposed by the Provincial Court of Bizkaia for sexual abuse of one of its students, now of legal age but at the time of the events was studying the first cycle of Secondary. The high court understands that the most serious facts described by the victim – explicit sexual practices – are not proven. Two years is precisely the limit for the sentences not to be effective and the teacher could avoid the effective entry into prison.

Gaztelueta, above Justice: the teacher convicted of abuse is "innocent" and the victim lies

Gaztelueta, above Justice: the teacher convicted of abuse is “innocent” and the victim lies

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“We are forced to insist, once again, that an act of faith by the prosecuting body is not enough to substantiate the authorship judgment. It is not enough for the victim’s version to inspire credibility. The reality of the alleged facts and its attribution to the accused must be the result of an evidentiary assessment process that does not reserve space for willful intuitions. When the Court recognizes that the details of the traumatic experience are missing, when it affirms that this is so because the emotional impact makes explainable even that the memory of that experience is lacking and when, finally, the especially serious events are narrated many years after the date on which their occurrence is located, proclaim without fissures that there is persistence in the incrimination and accept the full credibility of the story, it is an exercise of voluntarism incompatible with the constitutional canon of evidentiary evaluation “, can be read in the judicial resolution, date to September 21 and whose speaker has been the magistrate Manuel Marchena, known for directing the trial of the ‘procés’ last year.

The appeal revolved around the alleged inconsistency of the complainant’s account, which he only recounted as the most serious episodes of sexual abuse grew older. The Supreme Court agrees with the defense of the abuser when he stated that the procedural and constitutional guarantees require a greater burden of proof for such a high sentence, although his version was endorsed by professionals who dealt with him.

However, the so-called ‘Gaztelueta case’ closes with the sexual abuse suffered by a young student as a proven and incontrovertible fact despite the harsh campaign of the accused, the Gaztelueta school, Opus Dei and other sectors against the victim and against his family. Funds were put to support the defense of the accused while pointing out the family publicly. The penalty is significantly reduced but the Supreme Court remarks that the abuses were “continued.” A four-year restraining order is added to the jail sentence. Family sources postpone any assessment until they read the sentence “calmly” and fully understand the legal basis.

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