Prosecutors have asked for seven years prison for three men accused of
raping a young woman ten years ago in a club in Torrevieja. It is claimed that
the young woman was drunk and abused in turn in a car by the three young
men. The young woman was 18 years old at the time of the alleged attack
and the car was parked in the disco car park. The offence took place in
It is alleged that the young woman first started talking to the men inside the
discotheque and seeing the state she was in they took her outside to the car
of one of the accused. It is alleged that one of them put her on the back seat,
took off her clothes and raped her, then leaving the car whilst the second and
third man took their turn.
The case is being tried in Elche and one of the questions being asked is why
it has taken ten years to come to court.Sexual offences are supposed to be a
priority when it comes to finding court room time. The reason given was the
delay in forensic and DNA testing, which was particularly difficult to collect as
the men were all still at liberty.
The accused yesterday assured the jury that the intercourse was consensual.
However, friends of the girl, including her cousin, maintain that she was in a
very drunk state and when they pulled her out of the car she could barely
move. As such, it will not be accepted as a consensual act. However, the
accused have continued to blame the young woman claiming that it was she
who asked them to have intercourse with her.
The victim could not remember the rape following the incident as a result of
the large quantity of alcohol she had consumed. The young men, were aged
between 20 and 25 years old at the time. Two of them talked to the woman
inside the disco at around 2.30am. The third joined them outside and took part
in the attack which is claimed to have lasted around two hours. Eventually,
her friends found her and took her out of the vehicle.
The trial continues and the statements of the forensic doctor and the details of
the emergency forensic report will be heard. During the medical examination
the semen from all three defendants was found in the young woman’s body,
confirming that there was penetration on all three occasions.
In addition to the request of a seven year prison sentence, the prosecutor is
asking for €10,000 compensation for the victim with the payment being shared
between the defendants. A restraining order has also been requested for 10
years prohibiting the accused from coming within 500 metres of the victim’s
home. As the three men are from Alicante this would not cause great difficulty.
And finally, Torrevieja has a budget for 2018. This year’s budget was at last
agreed after months of debating when the two small opposition parties, Sueña
and Ciudadanos, agreed to back the proposals of the current town council.
The PP party continued to oppose the budget until the very end.
The final decision that the budget could go ahead was made on Monday 12 th
February at the town hall’s plenary session. The budget amounts to 90.6
million euros and received the final approval it needed to allow the council to
begin to make the changes they are hoping for. As the current government is
still in a minority they depended on the two parties of Sueña and Ciudadanos
joining them to provide 14 votes in favour.
The Popular Party (PP) remained the only party to oppose the budget but
their 11 councillors were insufficient to prevent the budget from going through.
They had raised a number of legal issues to try and prevent it being agreed
but these were insufficient to see its passing quashed.
Two unresolved issues were used by the PP to freeze agreement on finances
for the coming year. One was in relation to Torreta III where a case had been
brought by the residents for renovation of the estate. However, a court ruled
that this appeal be suspended. Another hurdle had been the Sustainability
Mobility Plan which the PP demanded be included in the budget. However,
the opposition were unsuccessful in holding this as an impediment to the
budget being agreed.
The arrival of a new budget to work with is a significant relief for the local
council. It should enable them now to go ahead with their plans and make
some improvements to the town. It should allow them to address issues to do
with the rubbish collection service, the cleaning of public buildings and urban
Explaining their support for the budget, Ciudadanos spokesperson Pilar
Gómez Magán explained; ‘We can not hinder the normal development of town
hall projects. If we do not support the budget we will be harming the citizens of
Speaking for the Sueña political party, Pablo Samper recognised that this is a
budget with cross party support. It is the first budget where those in opposition
have also had opportunity to make a contribution. There was criticism of the
PP’s attempt to block the budget. However, they remain resolute in their
objections to it.
Torrevieja has begun a campaign to prevent violence amongst teenagers,
particularly focusing on violence against teenage girls. The council has
produced a guide aimed at parents and this will be presented on 1 st March at
the Palacio de la Música.
It will also be backed with talks in educational centres and with practical
workshops and videos edited for the occasion. Councillor for equality, Fabiana
Ibarra, launched the campaign on 14 th February. She explained that the guide
includes the signs to watch out for that perhaps your daughter is a target of
abuse and what you might do about it.
Schools will be playing videos that also raise awareness of the issue
focussing specifically on the abuse that can take place within a relationship
during the teenage years.
‘Our aim is to clarify what violence against women is,’ explains Fabiana
Ibarra, ‘including physical and psychological examples but also to identify
other types of mistreatment and types of behaviour that sometimes our young
people do not recognise as being forms of abuse and control. The best way to
address the problem of violence against women is through prevention.’
Parents, as well as schools, are being targeted with this awareness raising
campaign. This recognises the important role that messages received from
home have alongside those they receive from school. The videos
demonstrate what it is like to be the victim of abuse and how it feels. The
issue can be particularly difficult as the abuse is often perpetrated by
someone that the young victim cares deeply about or even loves.
It encourages boys as well to see how the violence can start in their own
behaviour. ‘Violence against women is a problem for all of us,’ says councillor
Fabiana, ‘and we must all be involved in the campaign to eradicate it.’
Ignacio Ramos, the mayor of Pilar de la Horadada, was the guest of honour at last Thursday’s
meeting of the Royal British Legion held in Mil Palmeras.
The mayor was accompanied by Pilar Maria Samper, the councillor for Tourism and Commerce in the
town, where he was presented by an oil painting of the local Catholic Church, La Capilla de las Mil
Palmeras, by the President of the Orihuela Costa and District Branch, Pastor Keith Brown.
A decision to make a suitable presentation to the town was made in appreciation of the outstanding
support provided to the Branch in all of the ten years since it was first formed.
In that time the one constant factor has been the use for its Remembrance Services of La Capilla de
las Mil Palmeras so it was thought that an oil painting of the church might be an appropriate gift.
The project was discussed at a chance meeting with well-known local artist and RBL supporter
Suzanne Stokes, and with the assistance of her photographer husband, David, a number of suitable
images of the church were captured and the venture was underway.
When Suzanne spoke to the Branch President after the presentation she admitted at just how
nervous she had been on accepting the commission. “Being an artist who specialises on the human
form I was extremely worried that I might not be able to do the building justice. It is a beautiful
church and there were lots of elaborate shadows and reflected light that I had to consider, but on
seeing the reaction of the mayor and the branch members to the painting I am absolutely delighted
at how it turned out.”
In thanking the branch members Mayor Ignacio Ramos was clearly delighted by the gesture. He
spoke of his appreciation of the RBL, the good work that they do and the importance of the role that
they play in the local community. He talked of the two world wars, the awful losses that had been
suffered across Europe, the Commonwealth and the rest of the world by all nations, and the
importance in ensuring that it must not happen again.
As he addressed the branch the mayor became quite emotional. He said how deeply moved he was
by the presentation, the kind words from members and the genuine affection that he felt from
within the room as the presentation was made.
Following the departure of the mayor Pastor Keith welcomed Sheila Chinnock to the front of the
room. He explained how, in recent years, Sheila had donated numerous paintings to local charities
on the Costa Blanca, and last year how she had combine her two hobbies to create a poppy calendar
in order to raise funds for the Royal British Legion.
The calendar features some of Sheila’s most popular poppy paintings, including the one that was
commissioned by Stevie Spit for his Royal British Legion and AECC fundraiser at Benidorm Palace.
As a result of her endeavours Sheila was able to present the proceeds from the sales, almost 250
euro, to the RBL Poppy Appeal Organiser, Eddie Coleman.
Sheila said: “If my paintings and this calendar can make someone happy by raising a smile and
helping someone in need by raising a euro, then they will have done everything I hoped.”
The official sports centre for the coast, CDM Orihuela Costa, in collaboration with the Club Deportivo
Rayo Orihuela is to hold its second annual Performance Clinic for Goalkeepers, which will take place
on 3rd, 4th and 5th April, from 10:30am to 1:30pm.
The aim of the Clinic is to develop and evolve all the technical-tactical and psychological aspects of
the specific position of goalkeeper. Those taking part will experience high performance exercises,
activities in the indoor pool and workshop talks with video analysis of actual performances on the
The during the last day of the course the "Batalla Final de Porteros" match will be held which will
consist of a “play off” between two goalkeepers in a playing field of reduced dimensions with two
The Clinic is aimed at children aged between 7 and 19 years of age and the sessions will be directed
by qualified coaches, with extensive experience and will be conducted in both Spanish and English,
and is aimed at all goalkeepers at all levels. Participants will be provided with fruit, water and
isotonic drink in addition to receiving a gift t-shirt.
Registration is open from Monday, 12 th February until Monday, 2 nd April. There will also be planned
discounts for students already enrolled in the sports schools of the CDM in the 2017-2018 season.
Those interested in participating can enrol for registration at the reception of the Sports Centre or by
calling 965 503 915, sending a WhatsApp message to 661 796 798 or sending an email to:
An application has been made to build four tower blocks of up to 29 storeys in
la cala del Palangre between el Cura beach and Los Locos. This follows on
from the application to build Baraka towers next to Doña Sinforosa park close
to Acequión beach. The new application for Don Sento Towers has been put
forward by the firm Metrovacesa who are originally from Elche and have a
long history of this kind of building work in Torrevieja, Orihuela Costa and
The applications are taking advantage of modifications in planning laws that
were agreed a decade ago by the PP but were opposed by the councillors
who are currently leading the town council. Permission to build comes with the
requirement that at least half of the accommodation is intended for hotel use.
The plans are very much in the early stages and studies must be done
spanning different departments and including what the environmental impact
might be. The company interested in the building work has not yet set any
date for when they might begin because of the time it can take to get the
The planned buildings are not without controversy. Both that of Baraka and
Metrovacesa are planned in parts of the town where they will have a very high
profile and could impact upon areas of interest such as the Acequión salt
works and the beaches. They will also break the skyscraper limit of six floors
that is largely in place in these areas currently.
Members of the present local council, including those from Los Verdes and
IU, have opposed such building previously. However, the agreement that this
land could be used was made many years ago and Councillor Fanny Serrano
has explained that the agreement cannot be reversed.
Cultura.Orihuela.es is the address of the new website of the Department of Culture recently
launched by the Councillor for Culture Mar Ezcurra. The site, which is already operational offers
‘rapid, complete and updated information on all cultural activities and events’ that are organised by
the Town Hall department across the municipality of Orihuela.
Councillor Ezcurra explained: “The new website is intended to be a window from which culture
appears to the public and is disseminated so that everyone who wants information is only one click
away. The new website is simple, practical and dynamic. An essential tool that will allow us to keep
all citizens informed about all of the cultural news that we generate and in real time.”
Cultura.Orihuela.es is a ‘visual and intuitive’ website and very simple to use when it comes to
browsing and finding all the cultural information. It is made up of several sections, such as Events,
which includes a calendar to enable users to find all scheduled activities indicating the content, date,
time, place and other information of interest. Another of the highlighted sections is News, where
visitors to the website can find all the information generated by the council with texts, photographs
and links. Likewise, the website includes a section on Museums, which houses all the information in
a clear and simple way on all the museums and places of interest that the municipality of Orihuela
It also has a section dedicated to the Circus Theatre, which is the hub of cultural activity in the city.
The sheer volume of activity the theatre generates means that the website holds its events for the
coming quarter of the year such as plays – with a synopsis of the subject – concerts, events, tickets
and prices. TheMurales de San Isidro also has its own section which houses all the information on
this important cultural activity of the municipality.
Mar Ezcurra said: “Cultura.Orihuela.es is a dynamic and alive website, with continuous movement
and a continuous process of adaptation to the communication needs that may arise. In fact, in a few
days, the page will be adapted for people with poor of vision, with dexterity issues, difficulty with
arm movements or cognitive or intellectual disabilities. In addition, it will also aid navigation for
older users, those with reading difficulties or with little understanding of the internet.”
The new Cultural website interacts with the main social networks of the council, which allows
immediate dissemination of all events and at the same time offers a two-way interface with users in
order to collect any queries or concerns and answer any questions that may arise – something the
Councillor said was considered essential by the department.
The councillor concluded the launch presentation of the new website by highlighting "the
accessibility, immediacy and dynamism of the resource, stressing that it would be updated minute
by minute and invited all residents to ‘visit and use it as an essential cultural guide and leisure time
planner’ for the municipality of Orihuela.
Local man Tony Francis will be running his tenth marathon this year, having raised thousands of pounds
over the years for charities. Tony will take part in the London Marathon and told the Costa Blanca People,
“This year I am running for Sense, a charity which supports children who are blind and deaf. I have a
grandson who was born partially blind and deaf, so this charity is very close to my heart.”
Tony is seeking donations for his fundraising campaign and this can be done easily online at:
Following their money-raising event ‘Blue Monday’ Torrevieja’s Barbershop
Harmonisers were delighted to present cheques to two important charities on
29 th January. Altogether a donation of €2,350 was made to the Alzheimer
charity AFA Torrevieja and the cancer charity AECC Torrevieja. Both charities
were presented with their cheques by Bob Stein who is treasurer of the
A representative from AECC expressed his gratitude for the money raised;
‘On behalf of the AECC, we would like to thank Torrevieja Barbershop
Harmonisers and their treasurer, Bob Stein, for their generous donation of
€2,350 presented at the ranch office. The money will be put to very good use.’
Now, the group wants to continue to raise more money and entertain people
at the same time. In order to do this they are on the lookout for new members.
They rehearse every Friday from 10am until 12.30pm at the Casa Contenta in
Rojales, formerly known as the Spider-Man Bar. Any new men who might be
interested in joining them will be very welcome.
The Councillor for the Beaches of Orihuela, Luisa Boné, has announced that the city has
purchased various types of walkway for the local beaches this season. The Municipal
Department of Beaches has signed a contract for delivery, both for non-rollable non-slip
double-width beach walkways, and for roll-up beach walkways.
The Councillor reported that "both types are autoclaved to withstand climatic weathering,
which is fundamental to their durability". She added that "these 2.40 cm wide beach
walkways will be installed in the areas that run between the beach promenade and the
relaxation area. They are particularly useful for people with reduced mobility as they help to
facilitate access to the beach.
In addition, these beach walkways with their blue-painted edges are easier to spot for
people with visual impairment and so meet one of the requirements set out in the Forum on
On the other hand, the roll-up beach walkways will be added to the final sections of the
non-rollable beach walkways to connect the dry sand area with the wet sand and so
improve accessibility for those who wish to swim or paddle.
The new beach walkways are being installed in the four main beaches, which already have
bathing areas for the disabled. These are the beaches of: Cala Bosque, Cala Capitán, La Glea
and Barranco Rubio. Over time, these new beach walkways models will be installed at other
beaches across Orihuela. The sum of this investment amounts to 27.094,32 €.
The Councillor responsible for the modernisation of administration, Miguel Ángel Fernández, has
presented a new service that will facilitate the improvement of accessibility and usability of the City
of Orihuela’s website.
The councillor explained: “Nine percent of people in our country, about 4 million, have some
disability. From this Council, and working alongside the Department of Social Welfare, with
accessibility forefront of mind, we thought it important to work so that this sector of society can
have the same opportunities to reach all of the municipal services on our website.”
"The most appropriate platform to provide this service, both for quality, performance and price, was
the InSUIT platform," Councillor Fernandez explained. "The issues that most interested us were
firstly that it will not require a modification of the web page, and secondly the possibility of being
used from any computer and for free."
Technical assistance will be provided to those with decreased or lack of vision, difficulty in mobility
of hands and arms, speech difficulties, or cognitive or intellectual disabilities. In addition, it will also
facilitate navigation for the elderly, users with reading difficulties or with few digital capabilities.
The person using the website will only have to use the tab enabled in the website to activate this
service, which will provide instant access to the set of tools needed for navigation, which allows the
user to adapt the aids to their needs and preferences.
In addition, the website will be optimised for navigation for people with reduced visual capacity and
will read the content to the user, can receive voice commands or any sound to navigate without
using their hands, or will allow navigation through the keyboard and without the need for the use of
Sadly, due to so much ill health caused by the wretched ‘flu bug’ that is sweeping its way
across Britain, the UK and Europe, The Deadwood Stage Company” has had to postpone its
performances planned for February.
The production of Cinder Hella was due to be staged at The Madhouse in February and its
delay is a great disappointment to all concerned. However, watch this space for details of
“Cinder Hella” – which is not to be missed – coming later in the Spring.
The Company hopes that people are understanding of the situation and will continue to
support their productions.