Gays angered at Spanish judge’s pardoning
Judicial council overturns fine for Valencian judge who denied marriage to same-sex couples.19 September 2008
MADRID -- Gay rights groups slammed a decision on Thursday by Spain's top judicial council to overturn a penalty fine against a judge in Valencia who repeatedly refused to authorize same-sex marriages after the legalisation of gay marriage in Spain in 2005.
On Wednesday, the General Council of the Judiciary (CGPJ) cleared Laura Alabau of all sanctions related to her refusal to marry a gay British couple in 2006. Gay rights activists Thursday accused the CGPJ of siding with a "homophobe".
"We are ashamed and angry about this pardon", the State Federation of Gays, Lesbians, Transsexuals and Bisexuals (Felgtb) said in a statement. "It shows that homophobia, and, worse still, moralistic criteria and prejudices are allowed to come before justice".
The sanction against Alabau did not refer directly to her refusal to wed the Britons, but to a letter she later wrote to the chief justice of Valencia's High Court after the state Directorate General of Registries and Notaries ordered her to reverse her decision.
In the letter, she said she was being persecuted by the "government's propaganda machine". Her criticism earned her a reprimand and a fine of EUR 305 from the CGPJ's disciplinary committee, which was overturned Wednesday by the full council.
[El Pais / Expatica]