Rodrigo Lanza Sentenced to 20 years in prison for “murder” with “ideological motives”

Lanza’s defense, exercised by the lawyer Endika Zulueta, has said that they will appeal the sentence to the TSJA, considering that there were “many violations of fundamental rights during the hearing.” In case the appeal is not upheld, the Supreme Court, the Constitutional Court and, ultimately, the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg will be appealed.

The magistrate and president of the jury, María José Gil Corredera, imposed a 20-year prison sentence on Rodrigo Lanza, considering him “the perpetrator responsible for a crime of consummated murder, with treachery”, with the aggravating circumstance “for ideological reasons”, and ” Analog extenuating drunkenness ». Likewise, it imposes “absolute disqualification during the entire time of the sentence, plus the procedural costs”, including those of the private prosecution, having to compensate the amount of 200,000 euros to the family of Victor Laínez. Likewise, she will have to compensate the Aragonese Health Service the amount of 5,620 euros. The judge has also agreed to pay the defendant the three years of provisional prison he has been in and which will be lowered from the current sentence.

This is indicated in the 26-page sentence, delivered to the parties this Tuesday morning, after the popular jury court found him guilty of a crime of “murder”, with 8 votes to 1. The jury issued its verdict last Thursday, September 17, two days after the trial, held at the Zaragoza Court, against Rodrigo Lanza for the death of Víctor Laínez, in the events that occurred at dawn on December 8, 2017 was seen for sentencing , at the Tocadiscos bar in Zaragoza.

“Many violations of fundamental rights during the hearing”

The defense of Lanza, exercised by the lawyer Endika Zulueta, has advanced to AraInfo, who will present an appeal before the Civil and Criminal Chamber of the Superior Court of Justice of Aragon (TSJA), which can be filed before this Hearing within the next ten days. Zulueta believes that there were “many violations of fundamental rights during the hearing.” In the event that the TSJA does not consider the appeal, the appeal will be made to the Supreme Court, the Constitutional Court and, ultimately, the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

After reading the verdict, the Prosecutor’s Office requested that Rodrigo Lanza be sentenced to 20 years in prison, in addition to “absolute disqualification” during the time of the sentence and compensation of 150,000 euros. For its part, the private prosecution, brought by criminal lawyers José Luis Melguizo and Enrique Trebolle on behalf of the Laínez family, as well as the popular prosecution, exercised by David Arranz on behalf of the far-right Vox party, asked the magistrate for a sentence of 23 years in prison and 500,000 euros in compensation.

The defense lawyer, Endika Zulueta, then considered that there was no “murder”, but in any case a crime of injury with unwanted death, which entails a sentence of two to five years, which with the mitigating effect of acting with influence of alcohol, “the only possible penalty to be imposed is 2 years.”

Rodrigo Lanza, in provisional prison for this cause since the events took place in December 2017, was already tried in November 2019 and sentenced to five years in prison, after the popular jury considered him, with eight votes to one, Guilty of “reckless homicide” but not of “murder” as the indictments claimed. However, the TSJA ordered the trial to be repeated after declaring the verdict null and void, considering that there was a “sufficient lack of motivation”.

Víctor Láinez, to the left of the image, with a well-known neo-Nazi from Zaragoza.

The Lainez case, of the attempted xenophobic assault on a media victim: “The only thing Rodrigo Lanza did was defend himself against what he believed was an attack on his life”

Almost two years later, this Monday, November 4, the trial against Rodrigo Lanza began at the Zaragoza Court. Lanza, who has spent almost 21 months under the FIES (Special Monitoring Inmate File) regime in the Zuera prison, is accused of being the alleged perpetrator of the injuries that caused the death of Víctor Laínez, in the events that occurred in the early morning of December 8, 2017 at the Tocadiscos bar in the Aragonese capital. A popular jury will judge them.

The accusations – Fiscal Ministry; the family lawyer, Juan Carlos Macarrón; and the private accusation exercised by Vox, whose lawyer is David Arranz, spokesman in the Cortes of Aragon of this ultra-right-wing party – ask Rodrigo Lanza a sentence of 25 years in prison for “murder” with the aggravations of “treachery” and “motivation ideological ”.

Lanza’s defense, led by attorney Endika Zulueta, has always maintained that his client acted in legitimate defense and that he acted “out of deep fear of losing his life.” Thus, he has asked for his free acquittal and has ruled out that there were ideological motivations. According to Lanza’s own account, who was the first to testify at the trial, he was initially attacked by Víctor Laínez with a knife, which prompted him to respond.

Speaking to the media before the first session of the trial, Zulueta stated that “the situation is going to be judged of an event that should not have happened. There are two very dramatic situations. One that is irreparable, the death of a person. And another that can still be repaired, the unjust entry of another person into prison. Thus, he has influenced, already in the room during the presentation of the previous questions, that “there is a person who has lost his life and there is another person who wants to take away his freedom. And freedom is the most precious good we have after life.

“Unfortunately, the life of this person [Víctor Laínez] can no longer be recovered. He should not have passed away. What happened should not have happened. But just as I say this, I also say with the same impetus, that this person [Rodrigo Lanza] should not be deprived of liberty. This person is not responsible for these events. He will regret, as we all regret, the death of that person, but he is not responsible as the accusations have said, “said the lawyer.

According to Zulueta, all Lanza did “was defend himself against what he believed to be an attack on his life.” “He could never think that hitting a person with his hands could cause his death. Hopefully the jury understands it that way. Lanza acted in self-defense in a panic situation. He only defended his life in danger ”, he stressed.

During his first intervention in the room, Zulueta asked the jury to “broaden his field of vision” and “open his mind 360º” since “we are educated, I would say badly educated, to think and analyze life with earmuffs, with what which is called single thought. They give us chewed stories and we tend to repeat what they already tell us. In the criminal field this happens a lot. The police do not arrest a person accused of murder, they arrest the murderer and getting out of that frame is very complicated.

In Zulueta’s opinion, “what the accusations are trying to do is for you to give a very simple answer to a very complex issue. The version of the facts that the accusations handle squeaks, it sounds bad as soon as one makes a minimum reflection. Thus, the lawyer has stressed that the conversation between Laínez and Lanza on the day of the events “has not been heard by anyone”, none of the 13 people who are going to testify, and “the accusations tell us as if they had been there ». “The only people who know about the conversation are Laínez, who unfortunately cannot tell it, and Lanza, who is going to tell it.”

Zulueta has spoiled the attempts of the accusations to discredit the defense witnesses during the previous questions. All witnesses have the same credibility. They are all under oath. And we will see, by what they say and by how they say it, who gives us more credibility. “They are conditioning them,” he said, addressing the popular jury.

“The accusations say they are looking for the truth. And since it is not possible that a blow of this magnitude was only with the hand, because [Laínez] s skull breaks when he falls to the ground, 120 kilos to the ground, what do they tell us? that hit you with an object. Eight people saw the events and no one saw the object. But it doesn’t matter, he would take it. However, Lanza “says he was attacked with a knife”, but the accusations claim that it is “a lie because no one saw it.” “He hit him with an object, true, although nobody saw him”, has made ugly.

In this sense, Zulueta has criticized the Public Prosecutor’s Office that “always says that it is independent and that it is not on the side of either one or the other, but affirms’ do not be fooled [by the defense witnesses] and in the face of the disappearance of two objects, one says it is true [the object that Lanza supposedly carried] and the other not [the knife that Laínez supposedly carried] «.

«Everything plays against Rodrigo. Everything turns against the defense. From minute one when Rodrigo is arrested, “Zulueta continued to highlight the role played by some media that have already identified Lanza as” the killer of the suspenders “without maintaining the presumption of innocence. “So against it, that when he enters prison they do not treat him like a normal prisoner, they classify him under the FIES regime, in which he has spent almost 21 months, 20 hours a day alone in his cell, including having breakfast, lunch and dinner. Four hours in the yard. All intervened communications. Depersonalization. This is happening in this country, right now. They treat her like a dangerous criminal and thus he gives himself the image of more dangerous, “he lamented.

Zulueta has valued the presumption of innocence, “a right for all people” that “implies that no one can be convicted if it is not after a trial with all the guarantees established by law, with all the prosecution evidence and after that , a magistrate, a court or a jury can issue a decision without there being a rational doubt. From then on, one can be guilty, meanwhile one is innocent.

Finally, he has criticized the private accusation brought by the far-right party Vox for “trying to politicize the trial” and the “only one that has focused on the aesthetics” of Rodrigo Lanza in this trial. “This is not a political trial,” Zulueta remarked, assuring that Vox “comes here to do politics.” “Rodrigo Lanza’s performance is motivated by saving his life from a man [Laínez] who comes with a knife,” he concluded.

Lanza: “He’s going to stab me, he’s going to kill me”

After Zulueta, his client, Rodrigo Lanza, has intervened, who has answered his lawyer’s questions. Lanza has lamented the death of Laínez and the pain of the family. «I acted because I was attacked, I only acted defending myself. At no time did I think that [Laínez] could have serious injuries, much less imagine that he could have died ”, he assured to add that“ at no time did he see the braces ”of the Spanish flag. He has denied that he was carrying any object in his hand and that he hit Laínez from the back, as the accusations affirm, in fact he has indicated that “he fell on his back and with his head looking up.”

In his statement during the hearing, in which he described the events that occurred that night, Lanza indicated that, after 1:00 am on December 8, after leaving work, he was “partying” and drinking large amounts of alcohol with various friends and joined an acquaintance who was accompanied by two women, whom he did not know, the four of them entering the Turntable bar. In this bar there were “few people” and Lanza saw the bartender “talking to a man in the back, looking toward the door.” The defendant and his three companions stood at the back of the premises and continued drinking.

According to Lanza, his acquaintance told him that “the man at the bar [Laínez] is a known fascist from the neighborhood” and Lanza was “surprised and uncomfortable”, but did not give him “great importance”, until at one point given “the man turns, we look at each other, he calls me as a gesture and I’m going to talk to him.”

Regarding the conversation with Laínez at the bar, he stated that it was “tense and uncomfortable” but “without threats or raising his voice” and that there were barely “six sentences one way and six back.” He added that the conversation ended when Laínez asked him where he was from and that he replied: «From Torrero», but that Laínez told him «no, no, where are you from?», When he answered that from Chile he said « your sweat shouldn’t be here. At that moment, Lanza replied: “Oh, okay! It is clear to me which stick you are going, you are a racist », and he turned to his companions.

Shortly after, according to Lanza, one of the girls told him that Laínez was with his mobile phone and that it was at that moment when “I got paranoid” that he was sending messages on the mobile phone and “in case something could happen or things get tense, “at which point he said” let’s go, “they finished their drinks and headed for the door. When Lanza was leaving the bar, he claimed, his acquaintance yelled at him: “Watch out, he’s carrying a razor.”

Rodrigo Lanza, through tears, has affirmed that then he saw Laínez “very close to me, advancing on me, with a knife” to which he responded “pushing him with his leg on his torso, instinctively, to push him away”, but Laínez according to Lanza’s account, it kept “coming towards me” and “I’m already starting to panic.” He has specified that at that moment “there is a struggle” and that, “as I am aware that he is carrying a knife”, he felt “he is going to stab me, he is going to kill me.” That he tried to push Laínez away “by kicking” him, giving him a “strong” and “pushing him away.”

“At that moment I don’t remember anything very well, I don’t hear anything,” he assured, adding that he hit him in the face “and fell to the ground” and that “I’m terrified that he will get up again with the knife, that stab me and kill me. So I go over to him and give him a few fists. Lanza has reported that at that moment “I come back to myself a little” when I hear a “stop, stop.” “The knife goes to the sidewalk,” said Lanza, who explained that it was there when he left the bar.

Lanza has continued to claim that he picked up his backpack and jacket and went out into the street thinking that Laínez was going to get up and go for him. He untied the bicycle, that moment “seemed eternal” to me, and left. Then he stopped at a doorway, which was shaking and began to cry wondering “what happened?” He then went to a friend’s bar to ask him for ice to put “on his swollen hand,” spent five minutes and went home. The next day she went to work.

“Two or three days” later, he was with his then partner near the University City and the police called him by phone, urging him to appear at the police station for “an attack”, to which he promised to go in 45 minutes after leaving the bicycle at home. Minutes after the call, at his home, he was arrested by two plainclothes officers accused of “injuries”, to whom he explained that he had just spoken by phone with another officer.

To questions from his lawyer, Lanza said that his entire family lives in Barcelona but that he continued to live at the same address, where he had lived for years, and working in the same place.

Source: Kaos en la Red

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