Almuñécar Mayor faces first of many sentences
Wednesday, 01 July 2009
Despite several accusations of corruption (including building licence bribes, the Tropical Fruits scandal and the sudden change in ownership of any property he previously had) what seems to have ‘clinched’ his conviction has been Mayor Benavides' sudden enforced closure of Almuñécar’s local television channel.

Almuñécar’s Benavides faces 28 months of imprisonment

Finally it seems likely that Almuñécar’s Mayor will be convicted for at least one of his crimes, with a charge that was brought against him by media owner Vicente Fernández. It has been established that during 2004, in a move to secure his own political victory and his son’s position in the local media industry, Benavides enforced the closure of local television channel, Costa Tropical. Allegedly, not only did he shut down the electricity, but he prevented the staff from entering the premises by changing all the locks. The Criminal judge of Motril has charged Benavides with the crime of coercion against the media and the deliberate denial of constitutional rights. For this reason he is not only facing 28 months and 16 days in jail as punishment, but it is also probable that he will lose his office as mayor of Almuñécar. 

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