A coroner from the Institute of Legal Medicine of Tenerife has been compensated for a “covert punishment” of its director



An already final sentence obliges the General Directorate of Relations with the Administration of Justice of the Government of the Canary Islands to indemnify 2,000 euros to a medical examiner from the island of Tenerife.

The Contentious-Administrative Court 2 of the capital sets that amount to compensate the moral damages caused by a forced transfer of delegation (from Puerto de la Cruz, where he had practiced for twenty years, to La Orotava) in August 2018, a decision adopted by the director of the Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences of the western province, Jesús María Vega, after for the worker to pose a series of questions complaints related to the transfer of a mobile phone behind the guards.

That transfer had been annulled by another court in October 2019. That resolution already warned that the measure, executed without processing any file, was not due to organizational reasons, but to the “inconvenience” that his requests in labor matters represented for the director . It was, said that sentence, a “covert punishment” to the worker and an “arbitrary exercise” of the head of the institute, who during the hearing admitted his enmity with the plaintiff. In this procedure, other doctors warned of the damages that the transfer caused to the institution. As they stated in the trial, it forced them to “have to repeat highly complex forensic actions.”

After the transfer was annulled, the affected coroner filed a claim for property liability against the administration. The Government of the Canary Islands dismissed his claims, so he decided to go back to court, which once again agreed with him in a sentence that also became final in January of this year.

The head of the Contentious-Administrative Court 2 of Santa Cruz de Tenerife appreciates the “unlawful damage” of the “entirely unjustified” decision adopted by the director of the Institute of Legal Medicine. The resolution highlights the “questionable style” used by Vega in the letter that notified the transfer, which contained expressions such as “so that you do not have problems with the transfer of the telephone terminal on duty.”

This last ruling again links the transfer to the complaints expressed by the coroner and the proposal for solutions and calls it an “abuse of rights” or a “concealed penalty or correction.” “The link between action and damage is clear,” he concludes.

Although the worker claimed compensation of 3,000 euros, the judge quantifies it at 2,000, understanding that the extent of the damage is mitigated by the duration of the transfer (nine months) and by the proximity of the town to which he was transferred.

The resolution also warns of the obligation of the public administration to initiate a file with the director of the institute to determine if it is appropriate to demand responsibilities for having incurred in fraud, guilt or negligent action. On the other hand, it rejects the third of the coroner’s claims, who wanted the first sentence, issued by the Contentious Court 1 of the capital of Tenerife, to be published on the institution’s website, to “counteract the damage to its prestige” generated for the dissemination in the past of a letter against him. The judge points out that the affected person can go to another way to exercise the actions that he considers appropriate in defense of his right to honor.

The compensation is added to the procedural costs that the Government of the Canary Islands already had to pay for the first dispute, which amounted to 4,000 euros.



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