Hate crime

Autopsy reveals details of murder provoked by “Spain-colored” suspenders

Judge condemns severity of attack as suspect is placed in custody without bail

Alleged attacker Rodrigo Lanza (center) in 2014.
Alleged attacker Rodrigo Lanza (center) in 2014.Massimiliano Minocri

Víctor Láinez was kicked in the head as he laid dying on the footpath, according to an autopsy report released by Zaragoza magistrate Natividad Rapun.

The report into the death of Láinez, who was brutally beaten outside a small bar in Zaragoza, states that the victim died for “legitimately exercising his personal freedom to wear suspenders with the colors of the Spanish flag.”

Lanza, who has been identified by the owner of the bar, says he attacked Láinez in self-defense

According to the report, Láinez was “hit from behind and had no possible defense” against his alleged attacker – 33-year-old Rodrigo Lanza. The Chilean suspect allegedly used an object “large enough to cause a bone fracture” against Láinez, who fell to the floor and suffered a brain hemorrhage.

The report found that once Láinez was on the ground his attacker dealt “strong blows to the head, perhaps kicks, which broke the bones in his nose and adjacent areas.” The judge condemned the “severity of the trauma,” explaining how Láinez suffered injuries to “both the front and back parts of the head, without his body showing any signs of reaction or defense.”

Rapún said there “was no doubt” Lanza was responsible for the vicious attack and has sentenced the anti-establishment Chilean to preventive prison without bail.

Lanza, who has been identified by the owner of the bar, five clients and three people who were with him that night, has said he attacked Láinez in self-defense. According to a statement, published by his mother Mariana Huidobro on Twitter, the 55-year-old victim threatened Lanza with a knife. The judge however, has said no knife has been found.

The statement adds that when Lanza and his friends entered the bar Láinez gestured to Lanza to come over. According to the statement, Láinez asked Lanza where he was from and when he answered Chile, Láinez replied: “Piece of shit, go back to your country.”

According to the autopsy report, Láinez was “hit from behind and had no possible defense”

When the group finished their drinks and left the bar, Làinez approached them with a knife, the statement says, forcing Lanza to hit him in defense. The statement also maintains that Láinez was wearing a black jacket which hid the contentious suspenders. But witnesses from the night said that Lanza and his friends had called Laínez a “facha,” short for “fascist,” because of the red and yellow stripes on his suspenders.

Lanza has already served a five-year sentence for assaulting a local police officer in the Catalan capital; that victim has been a quadriplegic since 2006. The alleged attacker comes from an upper middle class family in Chile and is the grandson of Sergio Huidobro, an admiral who was very close to Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet.

English version by George Mills.

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