The Court of Instruction number 3 of Murcia investigate how reckless homicides the 13 deaths in the nightclub fire La Fonda Milagros y theater after it was learned this Monday that both were operating without a license and should have been sealed in October 2022. While the police work focuses on investigating the origin of the fire and the forensics on continuing to identify the bodies by comparing the DNA remains with those of their relatives, the judicial case is progressing under summary secrecy and the work of the Murcia City Council remains in question.
The City Council, which had decreed its closure in January 2022 but had not monitored its compliance, provided the court with the administrative file of the only premises of which it was aware, Theater Murcia SLthe same Sunday, a few hours after the accident, and, in a gesture of “maximum transparency”, as the vice mayor described it Rebecca Perez, made public that the company did not have a valid business license and should have ceased its activity. Although the spotlight points to the responsibility of the businessmen, “who ignored the closure decree,” insists the mayor, the popular Jose Ballesta, the work of the Consistory is in question. There is still no answer to why the premises were not sealed a year ago and they not only maintained their activity, but also openly advertised and even passed inspections.
In fact, the Teatre nightclub had a health inspection last FebruaryAs his lawyer indicated, José María Caballero. During the visit it was found that “all the deficiencies detected in the previous inspection visit dated February 9, 2023” had been corrected. “The premises meet hygienic-sanitary conditions, and I proceed to have it registered in the Autonomous Health Registry of establishments food retailers”, according to the official from the veterinary service of the Murcia town hall who signs the document.
This shows that the City Council, although a different service from Activities, was aware that, at least Teatre, maintained its activity, even though there was a cessation order and it remained the project that the company presented to divide the premises is in the process of being processed in March 2022. As of today, that file is still alive without any conclusions.
According to sources consulted by THE WORLDany request for request or modification of licenses must be transferred to the Inspection services, in the case of Murcia dependent on the Department of Urban Planning, Garden and Environment, whose job is to “inspect the acts of transformation, construction, building and use of the soil and subsoil in order to verify that they are carried out in accordance with the license or the content of the responsible declaration or prior communication and in any case in accordance with the applicable urban planning regulations, giving rise, where appropriate, to the start of the corresponding sanctioning file for non-compliance with the corresponding regulations”.