Fraguas Communique February 2023

From El Lokal (24/02/2023)

Call for solidarity to prevent the incarceration of the Fraguas 6

In 2013, the Fraguas Revive project was born in a town abandoned since 1968, expropriated (forcibly and fraudulently) by the Franco regime and destroyed with military practices. The project has tried to rebuild the town of Fraguas around values such as self-sufficiency, ecology, the recovery of heritage and community life. Despite being a project with a positive impact on demography and the local economy (since it is located in one of the most unpopulated areas in Europe), despite having the support and help of the former inhabitants and despite being strongly backed by civil society, the Castilla la Mancha government, which owns the land, does not see it favorably.

For these reasons, 6 people were sentenced as real estate speculators, even though the requirements for the judgement were not met: they had not built anything new, it has not been urbanised and everything is susceptible to being authorised. In addition, we were not allowed to appeal the sentence to the Supreme Court, thus violating our right of defense. Nor has the scientific community been heard, which has alerted on several occasions, both to the administration and the judge, the illegality of the sentence, which seeks to demolish Fraguas, assuming it as an irrecoverable loss of heritage.

On January 11, 2023, we received a response from the provincial court to the last appeal that we presented against the cost and demolition of Fraguas. As expected, we were refused, with the said cost of 110,000 euros being approved, which if not paid would entail a penalty of 2 years and 3 months in jail for the 6 of the Fraguas collective. Neither the voice of an independent archaeological team nor another independent budget that rates the demolition well below that presented by the Junta de Castilla-La Mancha (67,000 euros) has been taken into account.

In addition, in another open judicial process, by which they can now order an evict, they threaten 10 people with charging them 5% of the value of the usurped land (which they consider to be more than 1000 ha) every 10 days they stay in the village.

After 10 years of a hard judicial battle and 3 trials, due to the aforementioned and for dedicating our efforts to avoid prison for the Fraguas 6, we have decided to put an end to the Fraguas Revive project. Although neither the space nor the project will go ahead, we consider that Fraguas has been a victory since it has served to expose the issue of depopulation in public opinion and as a springboard for people and projects to return to the rural world.

The demolition of Fraguas at 110,000 euros is a civil liability, which does not prescribe, and if the sum is not paid, implies a prison sentence of 2 years and 3 months. In the case of not paying and going to jail, after serving the sentence, the debt would remain pending for life. For this reason we have decided to try to deal with the financial penalty. After many years of support and solidarity, we have already raised 40,000 euros and to cover the rest we are launching a crowdfunding campaign on goteo.erg on Monday, February 27.




This entry was posted in News blog and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.