Judge rules ‘no case to answer’ for those who secretly filmed women urinating in the street during fiesta in Spain and posted on porn sites

DOZENS of women who were secretly filmed urinating in the street during a fiesta in Galicia are demanding justice after the footage was posted on porn sites.

The women – who number around 80 – argue that their privacy was breached and took group action calling for the case to be investigated but a judge dismissed it as the recordings were made in a public space.

Women’s groups are now appealing the decision to a higher court arguing that it sets a dangerous legal precedent.

The case dates back to 2019 at the A Maruxaina fiesta in Cervo when secret cameras were set up to film in an alley known to be used as a spot where women would go to relieve themselves.

Much of the footage revealed the women’s faces as well close ups of their genitals while they were urinating. These clips were then uploaded to porn sites offering pay-to-view services.

Jenniffer, one of the women who was filmed recalled the moment she first saw the clip saying “I was just panicking,” and “I was crying…embarrassed..and didn’t know what to do”

In 2020, many of the victims sought legal action, asking for the recordings, whose author is yet to be identified, to be investigated on the basis of a breach of their right to privacy.

But Judge Pablo Muñoz Vázquez, the local magistrate entrusted with the case opted to shelve it, leading to massive backlash from the Bumei Burela branch of the Women for Equality association. 

Vázquez officially dismissed the case on the grounds that the videos could not be considered criminal because they were shot in a public place. 

He ruled that there was “no intention to violate the physical or moral resistance” of the women affected.

This has understandably deepened the trauma for many of the victims. Jennifer said “It makes me feel so frustrated. They are basically saying it is OK if someone records you on the street and then they post it on a porn site and they make money from it.”

The Bumei association’s Ana García fears that this case could set an example to others who produce these clips showing the ease of immunity.  

García said “this is about fundamental rights’  as “just because you’re in a public space, that doesn’t mean that filming intimate images and then distributing them is not a crime”.

Irene Montero, Spain’s Equality minister, criticised the verdict saying “taking pictures of a woman without her consent and distributing them is sexual violence”.

Women’s groups have called for protests and launched web campaign with the hashtag #XustizaMaruxaina (Justice Maruxaina).

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