According to Público newspaper, which cites the most recent report by the IGAI, violations of the duties of conduct of agents of the PSP, GNR and SEF and offences against physical integrity represent almost two thirds of the total number of complaints.
Since 2017, complaints to the IGAI have been increasing by around 13 percent, according to the newspaper. Complaints and court certificates that gave rise to investigation processes by the IGAI increased from 950, in 2019, to 1,073, in 2020, shows the aforementioned report, which also reveals an increase in cases filed last year, from 91 to 124.
Despite the increase in complaints and disciplinary proceedings, the IGAI only applied eight disciplinary sanctions, a number that is nevertheless slightly higher than in previous years (six sanctions in each year since 2017). The report does not, however, show specifications on the type of sanction applied, nor to which security force it concerns.
A large number of the complaints refer to violations of the conduct duties of PSP, GNR and SEF agents, representing 42.3 percent of the total. Complaints classified as offences to physical integrity account for 20 percent of the total, that is, 120 cases, which is characterised as having a “very significant” weight, adds the newspaper.
There were also 14 complaints against 12 PSP agents for discriminatory practices. In fact, the PSP is the security force over which the most complaints fell, with a total of 530, of which 126 were denounced and court certificates relating to offenses against physical integrity (aggression and ill-treatment).
Unlike in other years, in which no deaths were registered at the hands of the security forces, in 2020 the IGAI registered three complaints: one by the GNR, another by the PSP and the other by SEF. “Two of the deaths were with firearms (by the GNR and PSP) and both inquiries were archived, with no reference to which cases they were related to”.
The IGAI's mission is to control the security forces and other services under the Ministry of Internal Administration. It is incumbent on it to assess complaints and initiate disciplinary proceedings to investigate violations of citizens' fundamental rights.