A dozen Guardia Civil police officers raided the newsroom of the weekly publication, El Vallenc, in Valls yesterday, while outside some 300 people congregated to denounce what they considered state persecution of companies and media related to the self-determination referendum.
The officers, who left the building amid taunts from the people outside, took the computer of the editor, Francesc Fàbregas, and made copies of documents and emails, according to Fàbregas. The editor of the weekly then had to make a statement at the Guardia Civil police station in Tarragona. It is believed that the police were looking for evidence linking the El Vallenc publication with the printing of material to be used in the independence referendum set for October 1. According to different sources, the weekly was the company that commissioned the Indugraf printing firm in Constantí to produce voting slips. Yet, the editor denied it, saying “they didn’t find any papers and we have committed no offence.”
Other sources suggest that it is the Valls local council that might be behind the operation, using the weekly as a way of screening the commission. However, mayor, Albert Batet, denied the accusation and called the whole police operation “absurd and comical”.