The State Attorney General’s Office (FGE) has warned of an “alarming” increase of 116% in sexual assaults perpetrated by minors in Spain in the last five years, between 2017, when 451 cases were registered, and 2022, when there were 974. .

This is reflected in the Report presented at the beginning of the judicial year by the State Attorney General, Álvaro García Ortiz, and consulted by Europa Press. According to the document, for most of 2022 the differentiation between the criminal type of sexual assault and, on the other hand, that of sexual abuse has still been in force, which is why the statistical figures are separate and the computer applications have not been collected the news of the law of ‘only yes means yes’.

Thus, the data shows that, in 2022, initiated sexual assaults perpetrated by minors amounted to 974, which represents, according to the Prosecutor’s Office, “a very notable and worrying” increase of 45.8% compared to the year 2021 in which 688 cases were registered.

This continues the upward trend that has been evident since 2017, when 451 cases were registered. In 2018 there were 648; 564 in 2019 and 544 in 2020. “It is alarming that the number of openings for this type of crime has increased by 116% since 2017,” the Prosecutor’s Office assesses in its report.

The FGE points out that the causes of this rise are “complex” and points out that the opinion is “generalized” among the delegates that “various factors come together that lead minors to engage in virulent sexual behavior.”

Thus, the Seville section attributes this to the lack of adequate training in ethical-sexual matters and the inappropriate and early viewing of violent pornographic material. In the same sense, the sections of Murcia, Badajoz, Barcelona, ​​Huelva, Huesca, Ourense, Balearic Islands, Cáceres and Madrid express their alert about the increase in these crimes. Only the Toledo section reports a decrease in these crimes compared to other years in which reported sexual assaults between family members and siblings had increased.

On the other hand, the report of the Prosecutor’s Office reveals that sexual abuse perpetrated by minors represents a total count of 1,973 cases initiated, experiencing a “slight” increase of 0.81% compared to the year 2021. In any case, a trend is also confirmed rising since 2017 since the current figure represents a “notable” increase of 111% compared to that year.

Beyond the activity in the matter of criminal responsibility of minors, the document reveals that the initiations for crimes of sexual assault have increased by 31.5%, going from 7,302 in 2021 (prior proceedings initiated) to 9,603 in 2022. While , the crimes of sexual abuse fell by 3.39% (from 8,937 in 2021 to 8,634 in 2022).

In the case of criminal figures for sexual assault and abuse of minors under 16 years of age, they have increased by 2.8% in cases of sexual abuse and by 36.4% in sexual assaults. In this type of crime, the Prosecutor’s Office warns that an “indefinite rate of impunity” is maintained because the behaviors do not surface, being perpetrated very frequently by taking advantage of close relationships between victim and aggressor (family, school, sports clubs). In this sense, the Public Prosecutor appeals to the “responsibility of all” to “create a climate of support so that the victims come out of their silence.”

According to the Prosecutor’s Office, in the year 2022 this type of crime becomes “particularly relevant” and has been put “in the spotlight” due to the legislative modification that they have undergone as a consequence of the Organic Law on the integral guarantee of freedom sex, known as the ‘only yes means yes’ law, promoted by the Ministry of Equality, directed by Irene Montero. The new norm integrates under a single denomination the crimes against sexual freedom that previously constituted two differentiated offenses (sexual abuse and sexual assault) and places consent at the center.

This integration, according to the FGE, has generated “some confusion” in the public debate “due to the reductions in sentences of final sentences after their review under the new norm.” As you remember, on November 21, 2022, a decree was issued by the State Attorney General to provide a uniform response, based on the principle of “retroactivity of the most favorable rule”, although urging the “individualization of each case.” and to avoid “automatisms that prevent the assessment of specific circumstances.”

The Public Ministry recalls that at the time of writing this report, a new legislative reform has taken place by virtue of Organic Law 4/2023, of April 27, the reform of the ‘only yes is yes’ law, to avoid the effect unwanted application of the minimum sentences of the new criminal frameworks, which are broader, so that in serious cases there is no possibility of imposing low sentences.