A Spanish police officer who complained about her superior’s body odour has received a six-month jail sentence.
The member of Spain’s Guardia Civil militarised police force complained about his “slovenly” appearance and “fetid” smell, and was jailed for insulting a superior officer.
The unnamed member of the Guardia Civil in Chipiona, southern Spain, was being investigated by the officer over a separate disciplinary matter. She asked for another officer to take over the case and accused him of maintaining poor personal hygiene.
The woman’s letter of complaint read: “Every time he has attended proceedings, he has had a slovenly and dirty appearance, smelling very bad and with an unpleasant ring of sweat under both arms, staining his uniform and bringing a fetid odour.”
The female officer said it was unfair that while she was “spotless” in her appearance, her boss was in a dishevelled state. “Just because he is a commander, no one picks him up on the military code with regard to neglecting one’s appearance and maintaining the honour of the Guardia Civil corps,” she said.
The commander claimed that his “honour and dignity had been attacked” in reaction to her accusation. Consequently a military court found the policewoman guilty of “insulting a superior in a written form.” She was ordered to pay €300 (£250) in damages on top of the jail sentence, a conviction that has been upheld by Spain’s Supreme Court.
Juan Amado, of the AEGC association of Guardia Civil agents, said that the sentence was “excessive.”