Official says false gender-violence testimony a myth

Ángeles Carmona, President of the Spanish government's Domestic and Gender Violence Monitor. Photo: EFE
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• President of Domestic & Gender Violence agency says false charges very rare
• Agency says gender violence complaints, convictions rose during Q-2 2016

In the face of rising complaints and convictions for gender violence and domestic abuse in Spain, the president of Spain’s Domestic and Gender Violence Monitor (Observatorio contra la Violencia Doméstica y de Género) of the government’s General Council of the Judiciary oversight agency (CGPJ), Ángeles Carmona, has warned against any interpretation of the recent arrest of a woman in León on charges of falsifying a domestic abuse complaint as reflecting a general trend.

Speaking just days after the commission released figures showing a 13.4 percent increase in complaints of domestic violence during second-quarter 2016 as compared to the same period last year, Carmona said that generalizing that a large number of complaints of gender violence in Spain are based on false testimony is “a real fallacy and not based on true or hard data.” False testimony in gender violence cases, she said, is actually statistically insignificant in Spain and represent just 0.0079 percent of all complaints registered by women with Spanish law enforcement authorities last year.

From April-June of this year, Spanish authorities received 36,319 complaints of gender violence and domestic abuse affecting 33,593 women, an increase in the number of cases of 13.4% over the 32,023 complaints made during the same period last year. At the same time, convictions also increased during the second quarter of the calendar year 2016, with Spanish courts issuing 12,162 convictions for gender violence, 64.4 percent of which involved jail sentences for the male perpetrator.

► Read More in Spanish at La Vanguardia and El País …

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