Attacks on judges for performances on domestic violence
FJI (Independent Judicial Forum), wants to make clear its grave concern by attacks and pressures the judges are subject in relation to crimes of gender violence.
Whenever a particular criminal activity generates serious social alarm by extension that reaches or the severity of its consequences, arises the temptation to combat it forgetting the essential principles of a democratic State of law. And provided that it has given to this temptation has been a mistake that far to fix the situation, it has exacerbated it.
It happened with terrorism and drug trafficking and seems that it can occur with offences related to gender-based violence.
Thus, Francisco Serrano simply for disagreeing, in the free exercise of his freedom of expression, of the existing legislation on gender violence, has been subject to attacks and institutional pressures of all kinds, both from own organs of Government of the judiciary from the Executive Branch, including absolutely unjustified disciplinary actions to our partner. The diversity of viewpoints and open and free debate is characteristic of a democratic society in any matter, and this is what helps to detect errors and improve solutions to problems, what fails trying to impose a monolithic thinking.
Also has been under fierce criticism from senior members of the Executive Branch our partner Ernesto Manzano by the mere fact of his duty and dictate a judgement acquitting appreciate reasonable doubt due to lack of sufficient evidence, on the grounds that the crimes of gender violence should suffice the victim’s testimony to convict and criticizing the valuation of the evidence after subsequent events that obviously the judge could not know.
The need for that in the absence of objective and impartial evidences that enable to achieve certainty of guilt of the accused rendered judgement acquitting by reasonable doubts is a requirement of the presumption of innocence. A democratic and civilized society should be preferred to run the risk of having a guilty free has an innocent prisoner.
We do a call to will reflect on these issues, so that the fight against the scourge of gender violence against women, which should be firm and serious, not make at the cost of restricting fundamental freedoms or undermine the fundamental principles of the democratic rule of law.
Madrid, July 21, 2010.
National Commission Manager
Source: Foro Judicial Independiente