Updated Saturday, May 14, 2022 –
The Mossos warn of an increase in cases of hate crimes due to LGTBIphobia this year
A Barcelona court ordered the entry into prison of a 43-year-old man who was arrested a few days ago by the Mossos d’Esquadra of the Central Unit for Hate Crimes and Discrimination (UCDOD) accused of assaulting a couple who were walking by the center of Barcelona for rejecting his sexual orientation. The agents charge him with two crimes of injury and another against the exercise of fundamental rights and public freedoms.
The Mossos indicate that the suspect attacked the two men when they were walking down a central Barcelona street, first with homophobic insults and then with “extremely violent punches.” The agents investigated to identify the suspect and with the collaboration of the Urban Guard they arrested him on May 10. In addition, they point out that the defendant had previously been denounced for various threats and coercion and exhibited his skills as a boxing practitioner on social networks.
It is because of this practice that the agents consider that he could simultaneously attack only two men without their being able to defend themselves. The victims suffered various injuries, such as broken fingers, as well as blows that required stitches and various contusions that required subsequent medical treatment. Also psychological consequences, which have required assistance and emotional accompaniment by entities linked to the LGTBI collective.
The Mossos also warn of the increase in cases linked to hate crimes in the field of LGTBIphobia. This year they have processed 39, nine more than during the same period last year, which represents an increase of 30%. There are 51 arrested or investigated for these events, of which 75% are men. The Victim Assistance Groups (GAV), which focus on the most vulnerable groups, currently have 71 monitoring activities for people who have been victims of hate crimes in the field of homophobia.
In the summer of 2020, the Catalan police created a Central Hate and Discrimination Unit to conduct the most complex investigations in this area and standardize police work in all areas. They work in coordination with the Barcelona Hate and Discrimination Prosecutor’s Office and other entities, since they consider that cross-sector collaboration is essential to tackle this type of violence, in addition to the “necessary direct institutional response to homophobic crimes”.