The Altsasu Case: a brawl, 480 days in prison, and support from thousands of people

  • A demonstration had been organised for 14th April in Iruñea in support of the three young people who have been held in prison for almost a year and a half, and to demand they be given a fair trial. After a pub brawl with two members of the Civil Guard (Spanish armed forces), they were arrested and have been held in custody since then.

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The judge has accused them of "terrorist crimes" and the eight accused will be taken to trial on 16th April: the prosecutor is requesting they be sent to prison for 375 years in total. Many Basque and international activists have denounced the young people's situation, amongst them Amnesty International. Its latest report states that Spanish justice's "use of anti-terrorist legislation is disproportionate".

The young people's parents and the support organization have asked people to go to the demonstration to be held two days before the trial. "We are sure the demonstration will mark a turning point in denouncing injustice and proclaiming freedom and democratic rights", they state.

Wide-spread Support on the Solidarity Tour

Solidarity acts have been programmed for before the demonstration. The accuseds’ relatives and friends are touring the whole of Navarre: they have visited Tafalla, Lizarra and Artaxona amongst other places, and there has been wide-spread support for their cause.

In addition to that, during the weekend of the 16th/17th there will be numerous acts, meetings, demonstrations and protests under the slogan "Ez da posible! ¡No es posible! It's not possible!"

A Civil Guard's Wife will be the Judge

The trial in Madrid will be presided by judge Concepción Espegel. The young people's defence has recused judge Espegel to the Spanish National Court because her husband is a Civil Guard and because she herslef has been given medals by the Civil Guard. However, the request has been denied.

In fact, Espegel has just sentenced Mallorca rapper Valtonyc to three and a half years because he "praises terrorism" and libels the Spanish monarchy in his songs.

This article was translated by 11itzulpen; you can see the original in Basque here.

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