Three Catalan civil society organizations bring 37 new charges against Spanish police officers in the independence referendum case in Barcelona

The Catalan National Assembly, Òmnium Cultural and Irídia have presented a new expert report which identifies more than 450 illegal acts during the October 1st, 2017 self-determination referendum.

The Catalan National Assembly, Òmnium Cultural and human rights defenders Irídia have brought 37 new charges against Spanish police officers in the macro case of the October 1st, 2017 referendum, which is being investigated at the Court of Instruction nº7 in Barcelona. The three private prosecutions have submitted a new expert image analysis report to the judge, which identifies up to 468 disproportionate police acts in 16 schools in Barcelona that were used as polling stations during the referendum on October 1, 2017.

The report identifies punches, jabs, obstruction of the mouth and nose, choking and kicking, among others. After viewing these images and recordings, and as the result of months of work, the three private prosecutions consider it essential to charge 37 more officers of the Spanish police, of which 24 would be new charges and 13 would be extensions of prior charges of police officers already under investigation. Four of them are group leaders. Thus, the total number of officers of the Spanish police charged in the case of the 1-O referendum in Barcelona would amount to 90.

The Assembly, Omnium and Irídia once again denounce that by acting as private prosecutions they are fulfilling the role that the Public Prosecutor’s Office should play in defending the fundamental rights of the citizens.
All the disproportionate and illicit acts by the police analyzed in this new expert report took place on October 1, 2017 at 16 polling stations in the city of Barcelona: Escola Mediterrània, IES Pau Claris, Escola Pia Sant Antoni, IES Ramon Llull, IES Joan Fuster, Center Educatiu Projecte, Escola Infant Jesús, Dolors Monserdà, IES Santa Caterina de Siena, Àgora, Mare Nostrum, Escola Prosperitat, Escola Víctor Català, IES Joan Boscà, CAP Guinardó and CEIP Els Horts.

In addition, the three prosecutions also demand a new 6-month extension of the investigation of the case to carry out pending investigations and resolve those that may arise from the new charges of officers of the Spanish Police. The last extension set the deadline for the investigation on January 29, 2022.