Europe

Spain Catalonia: Conviction over Inés Arrimadas gang-rape jibe

Ines Arrimadas gives a press conference in Barcelona on December 22, 2017. Image copyright AFP
Image caption Inés Arrimadas reported the "hate crime" to the police

A Spanish woman who wrote a Facebook post saying she wanted to see unionist leader Inés Arrimadas gang raped has been given a four-month suspended jail sentence.

Rosa Maria Miras Puigpinós was found guilty of offending moral integrity.

The post was written after a TV debate in which Ms Arrimadas defended her stance against Catalan independence.

Ms Arrimadas, who heads the Catalan wing of the liberal unionist Citizens party, said it was "hate speech".

Miras Puigpinós, 45, posted the comment after the television debate in September.

She has since deleted her profile and apologised to Ms Arrimadas.

Miras Puigpinós' post also made homophobic comments towards the leader of the Catalan Socialists, Miquel Iceta.

Only Ms Arrimadas complained to the police.

"I'm going to report this woman. Not only for what she said against me, but also for all the women that have been raped," Ms Arrimadas said on Twitter at the time.

After learning about the comments, Miras Puigpinós' employer sacked her.

Miras Puigpinós has accepted the four-month suspended sentence.

It was suspended on the grounds she does not reoffend within the next two years and attends an equalities and human rights course.

The TV debate occurred shortly before a referendum, deemed illegal by the Spanish government, in Catalonia.

The issue of independence has divided the region.

After an election in December, Citizens is now the largest party in the Catalan parliament, having won 36 seats.

On Wednesday, pro-independence parties in the region said they would back an attempt to get Carles Puigdemont reinstated as regional president.

He was sacked by the Spanish government in October 2017 for his role in staging the illegal referendum and later unilaterally declaring independence. He fled into exile in Belgium.

Mr Puigdemont could be arrested if he returns to Spain.

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