MADRID: Protests have erupted across Spain following a court’s decision to clear five men of rape charges. The men, who have been dubbed ‘La Manada’ or ‘The Wolf Pack’ by Spanish media are accused of gang raping an 18-year-old woman during the 2016 San Fermin running of the bulls festival.
The men have been convicted on the lesser charge of sexual abuse, and sentenced to nine years in prison. Prosecutors had sought jail sentences of more than 20 years. Under Spanish law, charges of sexual abuse indicate a lack of aggression or intimidation. The men are also being ordered to pay about $60,000 to the woman.
The verdict sparked immediate protest outside of the Pamplona courthouse in northern Spain. More protests rippled across the country, including in the capital Madrid and Bilbao in the northern Basque region.