Officers accused of beating young man in Melilla are decorated by State

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© Guardia Civil
Footage of the beating was released by NGO Prodein.

THE Interior Minister, Jorge Fernando Diaz, has decided to officially decorate the eight Guardia Civil officers who were last week acquitted of mistreating a migrant in the North African enclave of Melilla, as he attempted to cross a border fence.

The announcement was made during a speech to mark the 172nd anniversary of the Guardia in Valdemoro, Madrid, in which it was made clear that the eight accused had “suffered a painful experience,” with the blow presumably softened now the men have been awarded the Cross of Merit.

The case dates back to October 2014, when a NGO posted a video of the officers clubbing a young man with their batons until he fell from a height of around three metres, as he tried to cross from Morocco into Melilla.

Last week, the Provincial Court of Malaga dismissed the charges against the officers, despite complaints from three additional NGOs, ruling that their actions were “commensurate to the scale of the problem raised by attempted illegal entry”.

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