Judge embargoes land where Julen died to pay rescue costs and fines

The borehole has since been fenced off.
The borehole has since been fenced off. / SUR
  • The plot is valued at less than the cost of the rescue mission and David Serrano's defence team says he may "never" be able to pay off the debt

The judge leading the trial of David Serrano, who is the only person implicated in the death of two-year-old Julen Roselló in January, has embargoed the land where the boy tragically died after falling down a borehole. This is part of the payment Serrano is facing to cover the rescue work, as well as fines as he was found to be lacking the necessary permits to carry out prospecting work on the site.

The land belongs to Serrano, who has been accused of negligent homicide for the death of Julen, for which the judge has asked for a three-year prison sentence.

Last week Serrano entered into an arrangement with creditors. His lawyer said: "Not now, nor in the future will he be able to pay off the debt, which could reach 1.5 million euros."

The amount quoted by Serrano's defence team includes other possible fines which could be levied on him should he be found guilty. The land is valued at less than the amount Serrano could have to pay for the rescue mission, which according to Andalucía's regional government, the Junta de Andalucía, cost 663,982.45 euros.

Asking for the three-year prison sentence, the judge said Serrano was "the only person aware of the presence of the borehole and knowing about the lack of protection, failed to put in place any measures to prevent a harmful result, putting at risk the lives of his own daughter and of Julen, who eventually fell".

Julen's parents have requested that the sentence be increased to three years and six months for "extremely grave negligence". However, Serrano maintains his innocence. His lawyers maintain that the charge of negligent homicide "doesn't stand up" because the events could have been foreseen and he had warned Julen's parents "several times".