Sunday, September 26

A man faces 39 years for locking up his wife, raping her and photographing her

Building of the Provincial Court of Pontevedra.  Gustavo Santos.

Building of the Provincial Court of Pontevedra. Gustavo Santos.

Years and years of tight control and humiliation that led to a serious episode of sexist violence. A Vigo man faces 39 years in jail accused of locking up his partner in a carpentry workshop located in an annex of the home, where he allegedly beat her, sexually assaulted her and tied her hands and feet with a rope, taking several photos during said attack that she sent via WhatsApp to a friend of the victim. Almost two hours of terror that only ended when a police device broke into the place. The man was sent to provisional prison after being arrested there. The trial will be held at the Provincial Court of Pontevedra.

The prosecutor attributes to the defendant, 45, five crimes: illegal detention, sexual assault, injuries against women, disclosure of secrets and habitual abuse, with the concurrence of the aggravating factors of gender and kinship. Along with the prison sentence, he asks for supervised freedom – for when he is in prison – and a prohibition to approach or communicate with the victim, a measure that, he points out, should be controlled with a telematic bracelet when he is not “effectively” in the prison.

Dating since the 90s, the couple began to live together in 2009. “Almost from the beginning of the relationship and especially since they had their daughter -almost a decade ago-, the defendant subjected the victim to continuous humiliation and disparagement,” says the Prosecutor’s Office in its provisional qualification brief. Along with “insults and threats”, he supposedly also subjected the woman to an iron “control” to “achieve her social and family isolation” and he decided “exclusively” on everything related to the health and education of the girl, ” without allowing interference from her. ” The victim was prevented from having regular contact with her parents and sisters – she had to see them or phone them “secretly” – and she was even prohibited from taking their daughter with her mother’s family.


The “fear felt” by the victim and the “emotional dependence” that she had, the public accusation specifies, caused her to “abide” by this situation for so long. Until the attack on October 10, 2019, which resulted in the arrest and imprisonment of this alleged abuser.

That afternoon a neighbor told the defendant that he had seen his partner with another man “a few streets down.” When she came home from workAt 10:30 p.m., he asked her to help him with some furniture in the workshop. But it was all a hoax, because when she entered there, the defendant, the prosecutor describes, closed the door so that she could not leave and asked her about said man.

After she answered that he was a friend, he would have started assaulting her. First, he allegedly slapped her and hit her with one hand, and then attacked her with a rope in various areas of her body, together with pulling her hair and pushing her. Shouting and after starting to remove her clothes, he ordered her to unlock her mobile phone and, without her consent, allegedly took two photos that she sent to the woman’s friend via WhatsApp. Despite the “express and persistent refusal” of the woman, he sexually assaulted her and took a photo again for the same recipient. And, to keep her in the workshop, he tied her feet and hands behind her back with a rope and left her lying there and locked up, with the light off.

Shortly after he returned. Again he allegedly beat her and sexually assaulted her. At that time the alert had already been given and the Police were trying to contact both the victim and the accused by phone. When the agents got to the other side of the garage door, they even used a public address system to make the aggressor stop: he broke her phone and told her to “shut up” and not respond to the requests. Finally the police were able to access. Almost two hours had passed, it was 12:15 a.m., and the man was arrested. The victim suffered injuries and, as a result of the experience, an adjustment disorder.

Years of control in which he left her out of the house

Along with the events that occurred that night in October 2019 in the workshop, the prosecutor recounted other episodes of the couple’s coexistence. Once, in 2018, when the woman went to dinner with two co-workers, he, to “punish” her, he closed the house door on her – she didn’t have keys “because he didn’t want to”– and she had to sleep outside, in one of the vehicles they had. On another occasion “she cut the TV cables” so that she could not see it and “did not repair the kitchen” at home, so that she “had to spend more time at home and light the wood stove.”

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