Case against six teachers charged with hate speech closed

Proceedings are still open against remaining two teachers accused of promoting hate speech during a classroom debate about October 1 referendum


Eight teachers testify in court on Tuesday (by ACN)
Eight teachers testify in court on Tuesday (by ACN) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

March 14, 2018 02:55 PM

A judge in the northern Catalan town of La Seu d’Urgell has closed the case against six teachers that were charged with promoting hate speech during classroom debate regarding the October 1 referendum. Their defense will appeal the magistrate's decision, as the judge temporarily suspended the hearing and they consider that the case should be definitively closed.  

The public prosecutor requested to close the case, for all except the two remaining teachers. Following the prosecutor's request, the magistrate kept the proceedings against these two teachers open. The eight teachers are from three different schools, and the complaints against them were filed a week after the referendum. On October 6, the public prosecutor opened an investigation.

Teachers denied the charges

The teachers charged with hate speech testified in court on November 7. All teachers, including the heads of the three schools involved, denied the charges. According to the accusations against them, one of the pupils suffered “humiliation, insults and even aggression,” because their mother is an officer for the Spanish Guardia Civil police.

On October 1, the Guardia Civil police was heavily involved in attempting to prevent the voting from taking place, even resorting to violence in order to seize ballot boxes and close down polling stations.

The alleged classroom incidents took place on October 3, just a couple of days after the vote. According to complaints, teachers opened the political discussion using a “pro-Catalan tone” and “against Spaniards.” The complaints were filed a week after the referendum.