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sexual violence

Three more women accuse Spanish director Vermut of sexual violence

AFP
AFP - [email protected]
Three more women accuse Spanish director Vermut of sexual violence
Spanish film director Carlos Vermut poses during a photocall after the screening of her film "Magical Girl" during the 62nd San Sebastian Film Festival in San Sebastian on September 25, 2014. AFP PHOTO/ ANDER GILLENEA (Photo by ANDER GILLENEA / AFP)

Three more women have accused Spanish film director Carlos Vermut of sexual violence, a newspaper reported Tuesday, raising to six the total who have come forward in the past month.

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The latest allegations concerning independent filmmaker Vermut were reported by El País, which first broke the story at the end of January publishing testimony from three women who said he had subjected them to sexual violence.

The latest victims, all of whom work in the cultural sector, had some form of relationship with the 43-year-old director, who won two top prizes at the 2014 San Sebastian film festival for "Magical Girl", his second feature.

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A rising star within Spain's independent film circles, Vermut -- whose real name is Carlos López del Rey -- has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing in several interviews with El País.

The latest incidents allegedly occurred between October 2012 and the start of January this year when they say Vermut forced them to engage in sexual practices they had not agreed to.

"The sex was very rough, he really hurt me," one told the newspaper, saying he had forced her to have anal sex, causing "tearing".

Another spoke about sex involving "beatings, choking and verbal humiliation", describing it as "not a game, nor a non-conventional practice, but violence for violence's sake".

The third, an actress who began a relationship with him in March 2023 which lasted until January, spoke of two episodes of enforced sexual violence after months of psychological abuse.

As with the first three, these latest victims also asked to remain anonymous and none of them filed a police complaint for fear of not being believed, the paper said.

The director did not respond to the paper's request for comment this time.

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'Rough but consensual sex'

Previously, he was interviewed by the paper three times, denying the allegations and saying he was not "aware of having exercised sexual violence against any woman".

"I have always practised rough sex in a consensual manner," he said.

The revelations shook Spanish cinema which appears to be only lately feeling the effects of the #Metoo movement which emerged in 2017 and saw a string of major figures from the world of cinema accused of sexual violence.

Several testimonies also emerged about another less-known director Armando Ravelo, with one female artist saying he offered to give her drugs and show her porn when she was 14.

In mid-February, Spain's culture ministry said it would set up a unit to tackle abuse allegations within the sector.

Last summer, Spanish football was rocked by a scandal when the now disgraced football chief Luis Rubiales forcibly kissed Women's World Cup star Jenni Hermoso.

Banned by FIFA for three years, he's now facing trial on charges of sexual assault and coercion.

Also this month, a Barcelona court jailed former Brazil star Dani Alves for four years and six months for raping a young woman at a nightclub in the city.

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#sexual violence

#gender violence #Crime #Film

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