The legislative measures taken since 2010, one that stands out is the amendment of article 88 of the Criminal Code through Organic Act No. 5/2010, which allows for penalties in the form of community service or tagging in lieu of custodial sentences. In the case of perpetrators of gender-based violence, such sentences must be served in a location that is different and separate from the victim’s place of residence. In addition, the system of fees charged by the justice system was reformed through Royal Decree No. 3/2012, which exempts victims of gender-based violence from paying fees, while the free legal aid system was reformed to ensure that such victims are entitled to free legal aid regardless of their income level. In addition, Organic Act No. 10/2011 amended article 31 bis of Organic Act No. 4/2000 on the rights and freedoms of foreigners in Spain and their social integration, so as to enhance measures to protect foreign women victims of gender-based violence who choose to file a complaint against the perpetrator. Royal Decree No. 1710/2011, for its part, amended the immigration regime for citizens of the European Union and the European Economic Area by allowing victims of gender-based violence to retain their residence permits under exceptional circumstances in the event of an annulment of their marriage, divorce or cancellation of a registered partnership. The reform of the Criminal Code currently under way criminalizes any action taken by a person accused or convicted of an offence of gender-based violence to render ineffective the remote tracking system installed to monitor the implementation of precautionary measures or restraining orders. The rights of women victims of gender-based violence are set out in the guidelines available at http://www.msssi.gob.es/ssi/violenciaGenero/Recursos/ GuiaDerechos/home.htm.
Source of Information
A/HRC/WG.6/21/ESP/1, para. 20.