Spanish court upholds ‘Wolf Pack’ sexual abuse verdict

A Spanish court on Wednesday upheld a disputed nine-year jail term for five men who sexually abused a woman, despite two out of five judges believing the gang committed rape and calling for tougher sentences.

The men were accused of raping the woman, then aged 18, at the entrance to an apartment building in Pamplona on July 7 2016, at the start of the popular week-long San Fermin bull-running festival.

The five filmed the incident with their smartphones and then bragged about it on WhatsApp where they referred to themselves as “La Manada,” or “The Wolf Pack”.

In April, they were handed nine years each in jail for sexual abuse but judges acquitted them of the more serious offence of sexual assault, ruling there had been no violence or intimidation as the victim did not resist or fight back.

Both parties appealed the sentence, which sparked furious, nationwide protests.

“If you resist they kill you, if you don’t resist you consent. What to do?” read one sign in a protest.

On Wednesday, the high court of the northern Navarra region upheld the ruling.

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