‘Lucia en la cobweb’, an unknown Spanish ‘true crime’ with echoes of ‘Tiger King’: violence, police corruption and an unsolved murder

It is now available in full on RTVE’s streaming platform, RTVE Play, and will premiere openly on La 1 with the broadcast of an episode every Monday from November 29.

The murder of Lucía Garrido in 2008 was not particularly high in the media in its day. It did shock part of public opinion and generated some movement and discomfort especially in the environment in which it occurred, Alhaurín de la Torre (Malaga), and it was even talked about in television programs, but the case was very far from generate hundreds of headlines, citizen demonstrations and social pressure for their resolution that have had other crimes turned into a phenomenon. Nevertheless, The cruel and violent murder of this 48-year-old woman has become the starting point and cornerstone of her own documentary series, Lucia in the cobweb. A ‘true crime’ about an unknown case that ends up presenting us with an unexpected criminal network that does not stop growing and in which police corruption plays an important role.

And that is precisely the “cobweb” referred to in the title of the documentary series, because the murder of Lucía Garrido ended up being just one more part of a whole network of illegal practices around a farm known as Los Naranjos and in which a series of people with different economic interests were involved. These people, among whom were businessmen, civil guards and hitmen, were used to carrying out criminal actions that fed back to each other, while serving to cover each other, hinder the work of justice and even make it impossible and, in short, continue to carry out their crimes with total and absolute impunity.

Directed by the three-time Emmy winner, Tomás Ocaña, and sub-directed by Rafael González, co-creator of the series and an expert journalist in the state security forces and bodies, RTVE’s production manages to summarize the complex framework in five episodes of just 45 minutes and is based on the real testimonies of numerous figures related to the police network: the family and environment of Lucía Garrido herself as well as her lawyer, the former Civil Guards who have dedicated their lives to uncovering the scandal, the Head of Internal Affairs of the Civil Guard, specialized press on the event and other experts who delve into the keys to the case.

The series, presented last June at the 24th Malaga Film Festival, anda is available in full on RTVE’s streaming platform, RTVE Play, and will be released in the open on La 1 with the broadcast of an episode every Monday starting November 29.

Next, four keys of Lucia in the Cobweb that will invite you to fully immerse yourself in one of the most complex corruption cases of the 21st century:

1. A tale that begins with echoes of ‘Tiger King’, continues with a murder and unravels an orgy of crimes


It is impossible not to think of Tiger King, the famous Netflix documentary series about a private zoo inside is America led by a genuine character where they exist. At the end of the day, Lucía en la cobweb begins by recounting the story of Lucía Garrido since she met the one who would be her husband: Manuel Alonso, with whom she started operations on the Los Naranjos nucleus farm that began as a dog kennel and ended becoming a refuge that guarded and cared for the exotic animals that the SEPRONA (Civil Guard Unit dedicated to the Nature Protection Service) sent them after having requisitioned them in illegal operations.

There, Manuel Alonso and Lucía Garrido lived among tigers, lions, and another long list of exotic animals that, as if it were a zoo, it even received visits from groups of children on a regular basis. However, behind its functions of guarding requisitioned animals, there was hidden an illegal business of which the authorities themselves were also part.

And there ends, in fact, your “connection” with Tiger King. That first echo that comes to us from Netflix’s funny ‘true crime’ is erased at a stroke from the discovery, in that same farm, of Lucía Garrido floating dead in her pool. Already broken his relationship with Manuel Alonso, Garrido had filed various lawsuits for gender violence against his ex that had been dismissed and his family alerted: He saw himself in danger.

2. Who was Lucía Garrido?


Born in Malaga in 1959 and the second of four siblings, Lucía Garrido’s family remembers her as a happy and smiling woman. When she met Manuel Alonso she fell madly in love and with him she fulfilled her dream of being a mother. They also set up the Los Naranjos farm together, in which she was in charge of administrative tasks, as well as cleaning and caring for the animals.

Over the years, the relationship began to deteriorate. A victim of abuse and fed up with Manuel’s extramarital affairs, she decided to separate and, from the beginning, he was clear that she was the one who had to leave. Alonso had much more important interests in La Finca, but Lucía and her daughter stayed in the family home. All the time he was there, until his death, he lived in fear. On April 30, 2008, she was found drowned in the pool of her house. He had a blow to the head and had received a stab in the neck.

The Civil Guard then even brought to the table the possibility that it had been a suicide to the incredulity of the family. The investigation was quickly closed: Manuel Alonso had an alibi and there were no more suspects.

3. Police corruption, center of the target of ‘Lucía en la cobweb’


Since the murder of Lucía and the first triangular business through which Alonso benefited from the bad actions of the head of SEPRONA, the cobweb begins to grow. On the bullseye of Lucia in the cobweb police corruption is found, since lthe actions of the corrupt civil guards related to Alonso and with the rest of the people with whom he carried out illegal businesses, they ended up causing evidence to disappear and preventing justice from acting correctly.

One of the main voices regarding corruption in the body is that of the former Civil Guard Ignacio Carrasco, main researcher of the framework and one of the key pieces around which the documentary is built. Carrasco was discharged after not wanting to be part of a corruption scheme and, since then, he has not stopped working to help the truth be known in a case in which there is still a lot of darkness.

Likewise, the documentary series also includes the head of Internal Affairs of the Civil Guard, Alfonso López, who for the first time speaks on television about what is considered one of the largest cases of corruption in Spain.

4. The complex Operation Cobweb: Three murders, animal trafficking, drug trafficking, illegal weapons and urban corruption


As we have commented, Lucía’s murder is the starting point, but the terrible event that until now remains unpunished spreads and uncovers a corruption plot of exotic animal trafficking, drug trafficking, urban corruption and arms trafficking in which civil guards are implicated.

The murder of Lucía Garrido. The Colombians. Triangular business. Edoa. Ivy. Emma. The children of Fuengirola.

The five episodes of Lucía en la cobweb present the perfect transmedia tool to avoid getting lost in the cobweb: an interactive character map in which the viewer will understand the relationships of the protagonists, their interests and their role in a plot that has not been completed. resolving. Likewise, on the RTVE website you can find a chronology to understand the future case.

The end is yet to be written, but as the lawyer for Lucía Garrido’s family, Luis Portero, assures in the final moments of the documentary series: “It is important that justice be done to regain confidence in the institutions that failed Lucía.”

You can find it in full on the RTVE Play platform.