Europe

'Gag law': Spaniard who photographed police faces fine

A protestor wears a mask with a gag as she marches against the Public Security Law in Madrid, Spain, Tuesday, June 30, 2015. Image copyright AP
Image caption Thousands of protesters marched against the so-called "gag law" in Spain two months ago

Spanish police are looking to fine a woman who photographed officers parking in a disabled spot under a controversial new "gag law".

New public security laws were introduced in July and allow for fines for a number of offences, including unauthorised protests and photographing police without permission.

The photograph of the police car, in the eastern town of Petrer, was posted on Facebook on 27 July.

The image was deleted soon afterwards.

Police spokesmen quoted by local media and the Associated Press news agency said the force, in Alicante, would pursue the case against the woman who took the photograph, who has not been named.

She could face a fine of between €600 (£420; $660) and €30,000.

One of the spokesman told the Petreraldia website (in Spanish) that the officers had been responding to an urgent call reporting vandalism, and needed to park urgently.

The regional interior ministry office will decide whether to impose a fine or not.

Ahead of the adoption of the laws, large protests were held in cities across Spain.

The move was criticised by rights groups, including Amnesty International.

A panel of UN human rights experts also warned the changes "threaten to violate individuals' fundamental rights and freedoms".

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