A POLICE officer from Catalonia’s Mossos d’Esquadra regional force is facing an eight-year ban from duty after being found to have invented an assault by a protestor. 

A video of the events has helped the former defendant to corroborate his story, in which he claimed to have not even touched the riot police officer. 

Now, the Mosso will himself be facing a court case, in which the public prosecutor is calling for the ban. 

The incident dates back to December 2019, according to online newspaper El Diario, when the Mossos were evicting squatters from a social centre in Barcelona. 

During the operation, the riot police on the scene arrested the youngster in question after claiming to have been elbowed by him. The suspect was held in custody for eight hours. 

A judge came very close to sending the suspect to court for an assault that, it has now emerged, he did not commit. During an appeals process, his lawyer was able to produce the recording of the scene that proved that his version was correct, and not that of the riot officer. 

If found guilty, the Mosso will also have to pay the victim compensation of more than €5,000. 

The lawyer acting for the victim, Eduardo Cáliz, lamented the fact that the police can often act with impunity in this way. “In most cases we don’t have a video that is as clear as this one, and even with the video we had to file three appeals for the courts to take it into account,” he said in comments reported by El Diario. 

The judges examining the case concluded that the assault had “not been corroborated by any other witness,” and was based solely on the account of the Mosso.

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