Spain: Policeman involved in reporting police abuses against migrants (1)

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Miguel Ángel García Salvador, a policeman from the Policía Nacional was the co-author of a documentary, "Con su permiso", in which migrant street sellers were interviewed and spoke of abuses and ill-treatment that they suffered at the hands of local police officers in the Valencia region. These ranged from theft, including instances in which fines were imposed without any paperwork or receipt being filled out, to violent beatings, which in one case resulted in two people who were on the receiving end being sentenced to two and eight-month sentences respectively, and irregularities such as the undue confiscation of one woman's ID card.

The premiere screening of the documentary last summer in the FNAC bookshop resulted in the head of the Grupo de Operaciones Especiales (GOE, special operations group) of the Valencia local police filing a lawsuit, which did not prosper, against García Salvador, against co-author Javier Sánchez Orús, against the migrants who spoke on the film and against the FNAC bookshop. García Salvador claims that he decided to shoot the documentary when he was working as a proximity police officer in Valencia city centre and dealt regularly with street sellers, who informed him of many irregularities committed by the local police, without daring to file any formal complaints or lawsuits.

The video also includes testimonies concerning the solidarity expressed towards migrant street vendors by the general public, the daily difficulties that they face, the reasons for which they emigrated from Latin America and the problems that seeking to obtain the required legal documents for migrants entails.

The video (in Spanish) can be viewed from the Sin Permiso Producciones website at:

Sources: Telecinco website, information blogs, Ignacio Escolar, 18.1.06.

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