A reality TV contestant had to watch her own alleged assault. Now Spain wants answers

Carlota Prado on "Gran Hermano" in 2017.

(CNN)When Carlota Prado was asked to enter the "diary room" on the Spanish version of the "Big Brother" reality TV series, it would have seemed an entirely mundane request.

The room is central to the show's format, which sees a group of people living together in a house, watched at all times by television cameras. It's there that contestants hear directly from "Big Brother," gossip about their fellow housemates, and deliver messages to the outside world.
But Prado was called for a different reason. The previous night, after falling unconscious following an alcohol-fueled party put on for contestants, she was allegedly sexually abused by another contestant, José María López. López denies the allegations, his lawyer told Spanish media.
    With no recollection of the 2017 incident, producers asked Prado to report to the diary room, where she was forced to watch the alleged abuse. Her distraught reaction was also captured.
    The footage shows Prado bursting into tears and begging the Big Brother figure, known in Spain as Super, to stop playing the footage. She is heard to say: "Please stop, Super, please," complaining that her heart was beating quickly and asking for something to relax her.
    The Super figure then asks Prado not to tell the other contestants about the incident.
    Neither the footage of the alleged abuse nor the diary room footage was aired at the time, but two years on, both were obtained by Spanish news network El Confidencial following an investigation by the site.
    Since then, the show's handling of the situation has sparked a scandal in the country. The network behind the series has apologized for its response, but scores of major companies have nonetheless pulled advertising from the show.
    The episode is particularly painful in a nation that has seen a number of deeply divisive sexual assault cases in recent years. At the heart of this incident is Spain's controversial law, which specifies that non-consensual sex in which violence or intimidation is not used is charged as sexual abuse, and not the more serious charge of rape.