Rochdale’s still nominally Labour MP (although currently suspended from the party) Simon Danczuk was released from custody yesterday in the Costa Blanca town of Orihuela, after two nights in the cells following a domestic incident at his “gaff” in nearby Algorfa involving ex-wife Karen. He got off for one reason, and one alone: Kazza refused to ratify her earlier statement to the Police. And now has come the spin.
The Manchester Evening News, a paper with a history of sound investigative reporting and whose editorial staff should have known better, has allowed itself to be used as a mouthpiece by “A source close to Mr Danczuk”, whose identity is known on Zelo Street, to spin a pack of lies about the incident, Todd Fitzgerald being the hack under whose by-line this slice of creative retelling has appeared.
“MP Simon Danczuk 'did not hit wife Karen in Spain and was not drunk’” tells the headline, which does not quite square with the photo of Kazza arriving at court yesterday covering up a chest injury. Perhaps she slipped on something. It gets worse: “There have been reports Mr and Mrs Danczuk appeared before a judge, but a source told the M.E.N. that was untrue”, readers are told. And to that I call bullshit.
The Mail even names the judge, telling its readers that the decision to shelve the case against Danczuk “was confirmed in a two-page document, signed by judge Rosa Maria Villegas Pulido”. And there is more of this made-up drivel.
The MEN reports “The source said: ‘The police in Spain, quite rightly, are very strict on matters involving domestic violence … If there was any evidence, at all, that Simon had assaulted Karen, he would have immediately face charges … The fact he will not face charges goes to show this has been blown out of all proportion … If he have had committed a crime, he would have been charged.’” This, too, is bullshit.
This from the Sun (which also carried the spin): “An official confirmed the domestic violence court abandoned the case because she had refused to ratify her police statement … under Spanish laws, an alleged victim’s evidence is the key factor - so if they do not co-operate the case is usually dropped”. The pro-Danczuk spin depends on interpreting the law the way it would be in England and Wales - not in Spain.
Photo that says it all - Kazza arrives at court
The Sun also helpfully reminds readers “Crown Prosecution Service guidance says cases can continue even without an alleged victim’s co-operation if the evidence is deemed strong enough and the alleged crime is sufficiently serious … In domestic cases, that would probably mean that the level of violence was considered significant or children were involved”. The Danczuks’ two children were at the apartment when the incident happened.
And the Mail had a court official’s statement, which proves beyond doubt that Baker fed the MEN a totally untrue story: “Court Number One in Orihuela, which specialises in dealing with violence against women has archived, at the petition of the State Prosecution Service, the case opened against British MP Simon Danczuk, who was arrested on Sunday on an alleged crime of domestic violence, after being reported by his estranged wife … The man in question has today appeared in court. His estranged wife has also appeared in court and declined to ratify her initial statement … After their appearance, the state prosecutor has called for the case to be shelved on the basis that the facts complained about have not been proven … With the state prosecution request and with no other accusation existing, the judge had to shelve the case”.
There was a complaint made to the Police. There was a judge involved. And it was only Spanish law that stopped it going any further.
The Manchester Evening News team should hang their collective heads in shame at their total and utter dereliction of duty. There was a story to report, and they failed signally to report it. Meanwhile, Simon Danczuk remains totally unfit to serve as a member of Parliament, and there is more to come on this affair.