It started as a conversation between colleagues on their way home, led to some jokes being made about sexuality and ended in an argument and a fight which had life-changing consequences for one of them.
Despite this the Andalusian High Court of Justice (TSJA) has just reduced the three-year prison sentence originally given to a man who attacked his workmate and left him in a coma to two years and six months, on the grounds that he had confessed and had not tried to cover up what he had done.
The court also agreed to reduce the amount of compensation agreed for the victim’s family to 500,000 euros for the injuries caused and 18,000 euros every year his condition remains the same.
The incident occurred in December 2018 at 1am in Avenida del Mercado, in Marbella. The victim was found lying unconscious on the ground beside his car, which was parked on the pavement with the engine running. Nobody had seen anything. There were no witnesses. And the victim couldn’t tell the police anything because he had suffered serious head injuries and was in a critical condition. He was, and remains, in the type of coma where he can open his eyes but does not relate to anything around him and is tetraplegic.
The police learned that he was a chef and on the night in question he had given three workmates a lift home. The following day officers went to the restaurant to speak to them and one, a 24-year-old from Ecuador, arrived later than the others and one of his fingers was broken. He is said to have admitted to his colleagues that he had fought with the victim, but said he left him leaning against the car.
He was arrested and charged with causing intentional injuries to another person, and sentenced to three years in prison and to pay compensation to the victim’s family.
The TSJA rejected his appeal that he was acting in self-defence, but agreed that his jail term and compensation should be reduced as he had confessed.