Mexican judge ‘sacked for painting teenage graffiti artist’s buttocks as punishment’

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Source: Telegraph.co.uk – 7.3.2010 – By Andrew Hough

A Mexican judge was sacked for attempting to spray paint the buttocks of a teenage graffiti artist as punishment for tagging on public buildings, it was claimed.

Mayor Gustavo Nieto fired the judge for spray-painting the buttocks of a teenage boy as punishment for graffiti tagging.

Fernando Perez Hurtado, a civilian judge from San Juan Del Rio, was dismissed for abusing his authority after he tried to impose the “humiliating” sentence on the 13 year-old, officials said.

Police said the teenager, who has not been named, was caught last week “tagging” on walls of public buildings and homes throughout the suburbs of the town, located in the state of Queretaro, about 160 miles northwest of Mexico City.

After he was arrested and charged, he faced court where the judge imposed the bizarre punishment instead of forcing his parents to pay a fine to pay for any future clean-up, it was claimed.

Despite protests from parents and other court officials, the judge ordered the young artist to pull down his trousers before attempting to paint his buttocks with the same spray paint the teenager had used during his crimes.

The judge, who is facing a three year ban from public office and a fine, was prevented from the touching the child after concerned officials stepped in, local media reported.

The town’s mayor Gustavo Nieto later confirmed he had fired the judge, whose job it was to impose penalties for petty crime, after he had “humiliated” the teenager.

He said the judge had abused his authority, because he should have notified the boy’s parents to force them pay a fine for the clean-up, not punish him directly.

“The report I have is that the judge told him to drop his (trousers) and spray paint (his) buttocks,” the mayor said.

“The moment I found out what he did cancelled it (his employment), automatically.”

Promising “a hard line against such abuses”, he said that because the judge was employed by the local government, he said he had the power to sack him.

Mr Perez Hurtado was unavailable for comment.

The family of the teenager were also not available to discuss the incident.

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