Oct 9, 2012

Imprisoned without trial; guilty until you can prove your innocence

Borderland Beat: October 7, 2012

They accuse them without proof, try them without a judge and convict almost all of them.

After court proceedings that lasted two years, Julio Vasquez Leon obtained a verdict of "not guilty." The 4th Unitary Tribunal of the 2nd Circuit in the State of Mexico, through Ruling 297-07, gave him absolute freedom because it did not find evidence of guilt for organized crime and drug possession with intent to sell, the offenses he was accused of. The sentence came too late, since he had already endured two years of incarceration, although he was innocent.

Contrary to the principle that "a person is innocent until there is proof to the contrary," Julio entered the Altiplano maximum security prison on October 5, 2007. From that date, he had lived in a bureaucratic tangle, with amplified statements from police agents and factual witnesses, the testimonies of relatives and friends, physical and psychological examinations, ballistics and laboratory tests, and hundreds of court documents that swelled his court files.

Julio was arrested and accused by four Federal Preventive Police (PFP; Policia Federal Preventiva) agents, who, in their expanded statements, contradicted themselves in their narratives about securing the drugs, and who also manipulated the original arrest report, according to File No. 57/2007, filed in the Third District Court on matters involving federal criminal proceedings in the State of Mexico, of which Rio Doce has a copy. Read more. 

No comments:

Post a Comment