Two Podemos deputies in the media spotlight for clashes with the law.
Isa Serra, a regional Podemos deputy in Madrid, has been in court recently as she has been prosecuted for insulting and injuring two police officers.
The incident she is being prosecuted for happened back in 2014 in Lavapies. She was attending a protest to stop the eviction of a 50-year-old man who had medical issues and nowhere else to go. The eviction protests were a regular feature in Spain at the time because of the housing market crashing, which saw thousands of people thrown out of their homes. At the end of the protest, the police intervened. They have accused Serra of shouting obscene remarks at them and throwing objects. One police officer reports that their hand was injured for up to 8 weeks.
“All the accusations” were “false”
Last week the court case came to a climax when Serra was sentenced to 19 months in prison, to pay a fine of 2,400 euros and stand down from her position as spokesperson for Podemos in Madrid’s regional assembly. The prosecution was pushing for her to be prosecuted under public disorder, but the court did not rule in favour of this. Instead, they prosecuted her under a charge of attack on an authority.
She plans to appeal the decision and has no intention of standing down from her position. Since the outset she has denied all the charges. She said at the trial that “All the accusations” were “false”
Serra’s lawyer told El Publico that the case had been unfairly judged. He claims that the only evidence used against her were the testimonies of the two police officers. They say that the court has given more weight to the police officers’ statements, which were contrary to the statements of other witnesses.
Under Spanish law Serra, who recently had a baby, will not have to serve her sentence as she has no previous convictions and the sentence is under 24 months.
Pablo Iglesias, Deputy Prime Minister and head of Podemos, wrote from his Twitter account that he supported her appeal against the decisionadding that
“in a democracy, it is not forbidden to criticise the sentences.”
He then said, “there are many people who think in this country that justice is not the same for everyone and that the corrupt go astray.” He has been heavily criticised for his intervention, with many saying that the government should be separate from the criminal system and that in his position he should be responsible and not be publically attacking judges.
In recent weeks Iglesias has caused even more controversy with his praise of the Second Spanish Republic. In his tweet he said, “where we would never see a Head of State appear dressed in a military uniform, because he is a representative of the people; where the army was subordinate to the civil power.” Later, during a sitting of congress, Vox leader Santiago Abascal, claimed it was a direct attack on the monarchy and that it was a disgrace.
I’m sure Pablo has said worse things than this about the king, after all this is the politician who gave the king a Game of Thronesbox set on his first meeting with him at the palace.
Every day there seems to be a new political drama for the government, and the media also seem to create stories from nothing.
Pablo is now Media Enemy Number One.
Ana Rosa, a talk show host, was trending on Twitter on Monday morning (27th April) after criticising Iglesias for going shopping without a mask or there was also the time they criticised him for wearing a Zara jacket in congress.
I suppose this happens when all the celebrities are in quarantine.
With his suggestion that the state might need to nationalise of businesses, these stories will keep rolling in and will not go down well. However, if you cut through the Venezuelan Socialism warnings, it might need to be done. These are unprecedented times.