The crime of threats is included in articles 169 and following of the Spanish Penal Code, as the expression or action that intends to endanger or cause damage to another person or their loved ones. In this post we are going to explain its characteristics in greater detail.
Requirements for it to be considered a crime
Not all threats are a crime under the Penal Code. The nuances expressed in this legal text are particular. Next, we give you an example to see it easier.
Imagine that an acquaintance of yours tells you "I'm going to break your teeth!" In that case, said expression would be a crime, because the threat refers to another crime (of injuries) included in the Penal Code. The same would happen with a crime of death threats, against sexual freedom, honor, property, privacy, moral integrity, socioeconomic order or torture.
On the other hand, if that acquaintance of yours tells you "I will never speak to you!", We could not classify it as a crime since it is not an action against the law.
In conclusion, the crime of threats described in the Penal Code requires that the expression or action refer to another crime.
Types and penalties
There is no single crime of threats in the Penal Code, depending on the severity, the person to whom they are told and other elements. These are some examples.
- Imposition of conditions and demand of amounts ("I'm going to hit you if you don't pay me"). In this case, the penalty for verbal threats will depend on whether the perpetrator fulfills his objective or not. If yes, the penalty will be between 1 and 5 years in prison. Otherwise, between 6 months and 3 years in prison.
- Non-conditional (for example, “I will kill you and your children”). In these cases, this crime carries prison sentences of between 6 months and 2 years.
- Aimed at groups of people and collectives such as, in particular, ethnic groups, the disabled, followers of a religion, etc. (eg "I'm going to kill the first Moor I see"). The penalties are the same as in the previous case.
- Asking for money not to publish facts related to the victim's private life (for example, “If you don't give me € 8,000, I will publish a sex video of you on social networks”). If the threat is carried out, there are penalties of 2 to 4 years. On the contrary, if it does not take place, they will be from 4 months to 2 years in prison.
- Mild threats to women / couples or especially vulnerable people who live with the perpetrator.
- Mild threat carrying dangerous instruments or weapons in cases of domestic violence.
- Rest of mild cases. Between 1 and 3 months of fine. The prosecution of the crime can only be carried out if there is a complaint of threats by the victim.
The consequences of the crime of threats
As we have seen, a crime of serious threats when there are aggravating factors can lead to the imposition of high penalties. In serious cases, action can be taken without the need for the victim to report.
It is important to file the complaint on time since on many occasions, this behavior can be the previous step to an aggression or action of much greater gravity.
Therefore, in case you have been a victim and must report a crime of threats, our advice is that you immediately put yourself in the hands of a lawyer specialized in the matter, so that your complaint is not filed. Only then can you achieve justice. From Audacia Lawyers, we invite you to call us so that we can guide you.