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Inter-American Court of Human Rights

Case of the “Juvenile Reeducation Institute” v. Paraguay
Judgment of September 2, 2004

(Preliminary Objections, Merits, Reparations and Costs)

In the Case of the “Juvenile Reeducation Institute”,

the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (hereinafter “the Court” or “the Inter-American Court”), composed of the following judges*:

Sergio García Ramírez, President;

Alirio Abreu Burelli, Vice President;

Oliver Jackman, Judge;

Antônio A. Cançado Trindade, Judge;

Cecilia Medina Quiroga, Judge;

Manuel E. Ventura Robles, Judge;

Diego García-Sayán, Judge, and

Víctor Manuel Núñez Rodríguez, Judge ad hoc;

also present,

Pablo Saavedra Alessandri, Secretary, and

Emilia Segares Rodríguez, Deputy Secretary,

pursuant to Articles 29, 31, 37.6, 56, and 58 of the Rules of Procedure of the Court (hereinafter “the Rules of Court”)1 and Article 63(1) of the American Convention on Human Rights (hereinafter “the Convention” or “the American Convention”), deliver the following judgment.

I

Introduction of the Case

1. On May 20, 2002, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter “the Commission” or “the Inter-American Commission”) filed an application with the Court against the State of Paraguay (hereinafter “the State,” “the respondent State,” or “Paraguay”) concerning a case that had originated with petition No. 11,666, received at the Commission’s Secretariat on August 14, 1996.

2. The Commission filed the application pursuant to Article 61 of the American Convention, seeking a judgment from the Court as to whether the State had violated, in relation to its obligation under Article 1(1) (Obligation to Respect Rights) of the Convention, Article 4 (Right to Life) of that instrument by virtue of the deaths of inmates Elvio Epifanio Acosta Ocampos, Marco Antonio Giménez,2 Diego Walter Valdez, Sergio Daniel Vega Figueredo,3 Sergio David Poletti Domínguez,4 Mario Álvarez Pérez,5 Juan Alcides Román Barrios, Antonio Damián Escobar Morinigo6 and Carlos Raúl de la Cruz,7 all of whom perished as a result of a fire at the Instituto de Reeducación del Menor “Coronel Panchito López” [“Colonel Panchito López” Juvenile Reeducation Institute] (hereinafter “the Center” or “the ‘Panchito López’ Center”), and by virtue of the death of Benito Augusto Adorno, who died of a bullet wound sustained at the Center. The Commission also asked the Court to decide whether the State had violated Article 5 (Right to Humane Treatment) of the American Convention, in relation to its obligation under Article 1(1) thereof, by virtue of the injuries and smoke inhalation that minors Abel Achar Acuña, José Milicades Cañete,8 Ever Ramón Molinas Zárate, Arsenio Joel Barrios Báez,9 Alfredo Duarte Ramos, Sergio Vincent Navarro Moraez, Raúl Esteban Portillo, Ismael Méndez Aranda, Pedro Iván Peña, Osvaldo Daniel Sosa, Walter Javier Riveros Rojas, Osmar López Verón,10 Miguel Coronel,11 César Ojeda,12 Heriberto Zarate, Francisco Noé Andrada, Jorge Daniel Toledo, Pablo Emmanuel Rojas, Sixto Gonzáles Franco,13 Francisco Ramón Adorno, Antonio Delgado, Claudio Coronel Quiroga, Clemente Luis Escobar González,14 Julio César García, José Amado Jara Fernando,15 Alberto David Martínez, Miguel Ángel Martínez, Osvaldo Espinola Mora,16 Hugo Antonio Quintana Vera,17 Juan Carlos Viveros Zarza,18 Eduardo Vera, Ulises Zelaya Flores,19 Hugo Olmedo, Rafael Aquino Acuña,20 Nelson Rodríguez, Demetrio Silguero, Aristides Ramón Ortiz B.21 and Carlos Raúl Romero Giacomo22 sustained in three fires at the Center.

3. The Commission also petitioned the Court to find that the respondent State had violated Articles 5 (Right to Humane Treatment), 7 (Right to Personal Liberty), 19 (Rights of the Child), 8 (Right to a Fair Trial) and 25 (Judicial Protection) of the American Convention, all in relation to Article 1(1) thereof, to the detriment of all juveniles incarcerated at the Center at any time in the period between August 14, 1996 and July 25, 2001, and those juvenile inmates subsequently remanded to the country’s adult prisons.

4. The Commission’s contention was that the “Panchito López’ Center embodied a system that was the antithesis of every international standard pertaining to the incarceration of juveniles, given the allegedly grossly inadequate conditions under which the children were interned. Specifically, those conditions involved a combination of: overpopulation, overcrowding, lack of sanitation, inadequate infrastructure, and a prison guard staff that was both too small and poorly trained.

5. According to the Commission, after each of the three fires, all or some of the alleged victims were remanded to adult prisons in Paraguay; it further alleged that the vast majority of the juveniles transferred to adult prisons were in pretrial detention. To make matters worse, the adult prisons to which they were sent were elsewhere in the country, far from the juveniles’ defense attorneys and families.

6. The Commission also petitioned the Court, pursuant to Article 63 of the Convention, to order the State to ensure the exercise of the violated rights to the alleged victims and their next of kin and to adopt certain measures of pecuniary and non-pecuniary compensation.

II

Competence

7. Paraguay has been a State party to the American Convention since August 24, 1989, and accepted the Court’s contentious jurisdiction on March 26, 1993. The Court is, therefore, competent to hear the present case under the terms of Articles 62 and 63(1) of the Convention.

III

Proceeding before the Commission

8. On August 14, 1996, the Center for Justice and International Law (hereinafter “CEJIL” or “the representatives”) and the Fundación Tekojojá filed a petition with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter “the Commission” or “the Inter-American Commission”).

9. The Commission opened the case on August 27, 1996, and classified it as No. 11,666.

10. On April 27, 1997, the petitioners indicated their willingness to work toward a friendly settlement. Therefore, on May 8 of that year the Commission made itself available to the parties with a view to arriving at a friendly settlement.

11. The parties met several times during the friendly settlement process. During its sessions, the Commission itself held three hearings in connection with this attempt at a friendly settlement.

12. During the course of one friendly-settlement meeting at Commission headquarters on March 23, 1999, the State pledged to present a timetable on the measures being taken to permanently close the ‘Panchito López’ Center. The Commission conducted an in loco visit to Paraguay from July 28 to July 30, 1999. In July 1999, the State presented a timetable of activities aimed at the Center’s definitive closing. According to that plan, the alleged victims were to have been permanently transferred by late November of that year.

13. The first fire at the Center broke out on February 11, 2000. On March 20, 2000 the State sent the Commission a report on the fire, in response to a request the Commission made on February 24 of that year.

14. During the course of the friendly settlement proceeding, on April 4, 2000, Paraguay informed the Commission that forty children had been transferred to the Centro Educativo Integral Itauguá [Itauguá Comprehensive Education Center].

15. On October 10, 2000, during its 108th regular session, the Commission held another hearing where the State once again pledged to permanently close the ‘Panchito López’ Center, this time within six months of the date of the hearing. The Commission informed it that if by the end of that six-month period the Center had not been permanently shut down, the Commission would terminate its intervention as organ of friendly settlement and proceed to process the case in accordance with the Convention.

16. The Commission held another hearing on March 1, 2001, on the heels of a second fire at the Center on February 5, 2001. At that hearing, Paraguay pledged, for a third time, to permanently shut down the Center by no later than late June 2001. The Commission stated that if the facility was not closed by that date, which it considered final, it would terminate its intervention as organ of friendly settlement and proceed to process the case in accordance with the Convention.

17. On July 25, 2001, another fire broke out at the Center; the petitioners withdrew from the friendly settlement process that same day.

18. The Commission terminated the friendly settlement process on July 26, 2001. It asked the State to present its final observations on the merits of the petition within two months’ time and scheduled a hearing to discuss the case.

19. On July 30, 2001, the State sent the Commission a report on the July 25, 2001 fire and announced the Center’s permanent closing and the fact that 255 inmates had been moved to various adult prisons in the country.

20.The petitioners requested precautionary measures for Benito Augusto Adorno, a child shot by a guard at the Center on July 25, 2001; they also requested precautionary measures for the 255 children relocated to various adult prisons in the country as a result of the Center’s closing.

21. On August 8, 2001, the Commission requested that the State adopt the following precautionary measures:

1. Provide the minor Benito Augusto Adorno with the necessary medical care and medications.

2. Immediately transfer the juveniles to the Itauguá Education Center, as [the] government had pledged to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, or equip other facilities to accommodate the juveniles currently being held in adult prisons.

3. On the timetable for relocating the juveniles being held in adult prisons, make certain that juveniles now housed in adult prisons are completely segregated from the adult prisoners.

4. Facilitate the juveniles’ access to their defense attorneys and family visits.

5. Investigate the factors that necessitated these measures and punish those responsible.

22. On October 24, 2001, the State sent the Inter-American Commission the information it had requested on July 26, 2001 (supra para. 18).

23. On November 12, 2001, during its 113th session, the Commission received news that young Benito Augusto Adorno had died from the bullet wound he sustained at the Center on July 25, 2001.

24. On December 3, 2001, the Commission approved Report No. 126/01, on the merits, wherein it concluded that:

The Republic of Paraguay violated the right to life, protected by Article 4 of the American Convention on Human Rights, to the detriment of: Elvio Epifanio Acosta Ocampos, Marcos Antonio Giménez, Diego Walter Valdez, Sergio Daniel Vega Figueredo, Sergio David Poletti Domínguez, Mario Alvarez Pérez, Juan Alcides Román Barrios, Antonio Damián Escobar Morinigo, Carlos Raúl de la Cruz and Benito Augusto Adorno.

The Republic of Paraguay violated the right to humane treatment, protected under Article 5 of the American Convention, to the detriment of: Abel Achar Acuña, José Milicades Cañete, Ever Ramón Molinas Zárate, Arsenio Joel Barrios Báez, Carlos Raúl de la Cruz, Alfredo Duarte Ramos, Sergio Vincent Navarro Moraez, Raúl Esteban Portillo, Ismael Méndez Aranda, Pedro Iván Peña, Osvaldo Daniel Sosa, Walter Javier Riveros Rojas, Osmar López Verón, Miguel Coronel, César Ojeda, Heriberto Zarate, Antonio Escobar, Francisco Noé Andrada, Jorge Daniel Toledo, Pablo Emmanuel Rojas, Sixto González Franco, Francisco Ramón Adorno, Antonio Delgado, Claudio Coronel Quiroga, Clemente Luis Escobar González, Julio César García, José Amado Jara Fernando, Alberto David Martínez, Miguel Angel Martínez, Osvaldo Espinola Mora, Hugo Antonio Quintana Vera and Juan Carlos Vivero Zarza, Eduardo Vera, Ulises Zelaya Flores, Hugo Olmedo, Rafael Aquino Acuña, Nelson Rodríguez, Demetrio Silguero, Aristides Ramón Ortiz B. and Carlos Raúl Romero Giacomo, by virtue of the injuries they sustained and the fumes they inhaled during the three fires. It also violated the right to human treatment in the case of all the children and adolescents held at the ‘Panchito López’ Center between August 1996 and July 2001 and subsequently transferred to the country’s adult prisons.

The Republic of Paraguay violated the rights protected in Article 5 (right to humane treatment), Article 7 (right to personal liberty), Article 19 (the rights of the child), Article 8 (the right to a fair trial), and Article 25 (right to judicial protection) of the American Convention, to the detriment of the children and adolescents interned at the ‘Panchito López’ Juvenile Reeducation Institute between August 1996 and July 2001 and subsequently sent to adult prisons in the country. Because of those violations, the Paraguayan State has failed to honor its obligation under Convention Article 1(1), which is to respect those rights and ensure their free and full exercise to all persons subject to its jurisdiction.

25. Based on the foregoing findings, the Commission recommended that the State:

  1. Immediately transfer the children and adolescents to proper centers separate from adult prisons, but discount this measure as a long-term solution to the problem of where to house juvenile detainees.

  1. Adopt the necessary measures to put the Child and Adolescent Code into full effect immediately.

  1. Adopt the necessary measures to guarantee children and adolescents an effective right of defense, to reduce the length of time they are held in preventive custody and make greater use of alternatives to deprivation of liberty.

  1. Adopt the measures needed to investigate the violations established in this report and to punish those responsible.

  1. Adopt the necessary measures so that the children and adolescents who were held at the ‘Panchito López’ Reeducation Institute or, where applicable, the next of kin of the deceased adolescents, receive adequate, prompt and effective compensation for the violations herein established.

  1. Adopt the necessary measures to prevent a recurrence of events and practices such as these.

  1. Transfer detained juveniles who have physical handicaps, addictions and mental disorders to the proper health centers, and give those suffering from addictions the proper treatment.

  1. Abolish prolonged solitary confinement and the practice of sending children and adolescents to Emboscada prison as a form of punishment.

26. On December 20, 2001, the Commission sent that Report to the State and gave it two months to comply with the recommendations made therein. On February 18, 2002, the State asked the Commission for an extension in order to comply with the recommendations made in the report on the merits. The Commission granted that extension on February 26, 2002, giving the State a two-month extension starting as of that date.

27. On April 30, 2002, the State informed the Commission of the measures that it was taking to comply with the recommendations made in Commission Report No. 126/01.

IV

Proceeding before the Court

28. The Commission filed an application with the Court on May 20, 2002, and designated Messrs. José Zalaquett and Santiago A. Canton as its delegates, with Ariel Dulitzky, Ignacio Álvarez and Mary Beloff as legal advisors.

29. Once the President of the Court (hereinafter “the President”) had made a preliminary review of the application, on June 25, 2002 the Secretariat of the Court (hereinafter “the Secretariat”) notified the respondent State of the application and its appendixes and advised it of the deadlines for answering the application and for designating its representation in the case. That same day, by instruction of the President, the Secretariat advised the State of its right to appoint a Judge ad hoc to participate in the deliberations on the instant case.

30. On June 21, 2002, the Court issued an order wherein it admitted the application filed in the instant case with regard to the persons named in the application. The Court also asked the Commission to identify by name, within three months, “the children and adolescents confined in the ‘Panchito López’ Juvenile Reeducation Institute between August 1996 and July 2001, and subsequently remanded to adult prisons in the country.” It advised the Commission that if that information was not provided the case would still go forward, but only those persons named in the application would be regarded as the alleged victims in the case.

31.On June 27, 2002, pursuant to Article 35(1)(d) and (e) of the Rules of Court, the Secretariat sent CEJIL, as original claimant in the case before the Commission and as representative of the alleged victims, notification that the application had been filed so that, pursuant to Article 35(4) of the Rules of Court,23 it might present its brief of pleadings, motions and evidence (hereinafter “brief of pleadings and motions”) within a period of 30 days.

32. On July 18, 2002, the State designated Mr. Julio Duarte Van Humbeck as its Agent, and Mr. Mario Sandoval as its Alternate Agent.

33. On July 31, 2002, after being granted an extension, the State designated Mr. Víctor Manuel Núñez Rodríguez as Judge ad hoc in the instant case. It also provided a new address for official receipt of all pertinent communications.

34.On September 19, 2002, the Commission sent a “complete list of the names of the inmates at the Panchito López Juvenile Reeducation Institute between August 1996 and July 2001.” This was the list that the State had sent to the Commission on August 26, 2002. The Commission stated further that it was in the process of developing a single database, which it would send to the Court “as soon as possible.” On October 2, 2002, the Secretariat asked the Commission to re-send certain pages of that list that were illegible. On October 4, 2002, the Commission reported that the copies it provided to the Court were the only ones it had in its possession. The Commission therefore petitioned the Court to order the State to forward those pages to the Court, as they were official documents prepared by the Paraguayan authorities.

35.On October 15, 2002, after being given two extensions, the representatives submitted their written brief of pleadings and motions wherein they alleged, in addition to violating the Articles cited by the Commission (supra 2 and 3), that the State had also violated Article 26 (Progressive Development) of the American Convention, and Article 2 (Domestic Legal Effects) thereof. The representatives also petitioned the Court to order the State to adopt certain measures of reparations and to reimburse costs and expenses.

36. On November 19, 2002, the Commission sent the “combined chart” of the alleged victims in the case mentioned in its September 19, 2002 note (supra para. 34).

37. On November 14, 2002, the State asked the Court to order the Commission to provide certain minutes of the hearings it (the Commission) had held on the case. On December 5, 2002, the Secretariat asked the State to explain the reason why it wanted the Commission to be instructed to provide the minutes of the hearings and what the necessity was. In a communication of that same date, the State argued that the minutes in question accurately reflected the positions of the parties.

38. On December 13, 2002, the State, after being granted four extensions, filed preliminary objections, answered the application, and presented its observations on the brief of pleadings and motions. The State’s preliminary objections were as follows: 1) a legal defect in the presentation of the application; 2) failure to previously assert violation of Article 26 of the Convention; and 3) the existence of two complaints, one in a domestic court and another in an international court, with identical subjects, object and cause of action.

39.After having been granted three extensions, on February 21, 2003 the Commission presented its observations on the brief of pleadings and motions filed by the representatives on October 15, 2002 (supra para. 35). In that same submission, the Commission also presented its comments on the preliminary objections raised by the State on December 13, 2002 (supra para. 38). The Commission provided appendixes with that brief.

40.On February 24, 2003,the representatives sent new copies of the illegible or incomplete pages in the appendixes to its brief of pleadings and motions (supra para. 35).

41. On January 9, 2004, the Commission designated Mrs. Lilly Ching as a legal advisor, in place of Mrs. Mary Beloff.

42. On March 2, 2004, the President issued an order in which, pursuant to Article 47(3) of the Rules of Procedure, he instructed the following persons to make their statements in the presence of a person with legal authority to authenticate documents and statements (affidavits):

i. the witnesses offered by the Inter-American Commission: Walter Javier Riveros Rojas, Osmar López Verón, Pablo Emmanuel Rojas, Antonio Delgado, Francisco Ramón Adorno, Raúl Ramírez Bogado and Jorge Bogarín González;

ii. the witnesses offered by the representatives: Arsenio Joel Barrios Báez, Clemente Luis Escobar González, Hugo Antonio Vera Quintana, Concepción Ramos Duarte, María Teresa de Jesús Pérez, Silvia Portillo Martínez, Dirma Monserrat Peña and María Estela Barrios;

iii. the witnesses offered by the Commission and by the representatives: Jorge Daniel Toledo and Sixto Gonzáles Franco;

iv. the witnesses offered by the State: Fernando Vicente Canillas Vera, Teresa Almirón, Michael Sean O’Loingsigh, Teófilo Báez Zacarías, Estanislao Balbuena Jara, Carolina Nicora, Eduardo Giménez, Carolina Laspina de Vera, Mirtha Isabel Herrera Fleitas, Inés Ramona Bogarín Peralta, José Lezcano, Ana María Llanes, María Teresa Báez, Elizabeth Flores, Maureen Antoinette Herman, Teresa Alcaraz de Mencia, María Vilma Talavera de Bogado, Carlos Torres Alújas, Christian Rojas, Rubén Valdéz and Miguel Ángel Insaurralde Coeffier;

v. the expert witness offered by the Commission: Carlos Arestivo; and

vi. the expert witnesses offered by the State: Jorge Rolón Luna and Pedro Juan Mayor Martínez.

43. In that same order, the President also set a fixed twenty-day time period, not subject to extension or deferment and commencing as of the receipt of the affidavits (supra para. 42), for each party to present any comments it deemed pertinent with regard to the affidavits submitted by the other parties. In that same order (supra para. 42), the President summoned the Inter-American Commission, the representatives and the State to a public hearing to be held at the seat of the Court starting on May 3, 2004, to hear the parties’ final oral arguments with regard to the preliminary objections and eventual merits, reparations and costs, and the testimony of the witnesses and experts named below (infra para. 79). In that same order of March 2, 2004 (supra para. 42), the also President advised the parties that they had until July 5, 2004 to submit their final written pleadings.

44. On March 31, 2004, the representatives presented the affidavits (supra para. 42 and infra para. 70). On April 6, 2004, the representatives forwarded the testimony of Mrs. Silvia Portillo Martínez, which was not sworn in the presence of a person authorized by law to authenticate documents and statements. That statement had been requested in the President’s order of March 2, 2004 (supra para. 42), but was not sent with the statements received at the Secretariat on March 31, 2004. The representatives further advised that Sixto Gonzáles Franco, Concepción Ramos Duarte and María Estela Barrios, offered as witnesses, had been unable to make their statements in the presence of a person authorized by law to authenticate documents and statements. The representatives reported that they had not sent either video or audio tape recordings of those statements because of the “high costs” involved. On April 16, 2004, the representatives sent the originals of the statements they had sent to the Court via facsimile on March 31, 2004.

45. On March 31, 2004, the State presented the statements made by the witnesses and experts in the presence of the Office of the Chief Government Notary of the Republic of Paraguay (supra para. 42). In that note the State reported that it was unable to take statements from witnesses María Teresa Baez and José Lezcano, and asked that some of the witnesses and experts it had offered and who had provided expert opinions and other testimony at the Office of the Chief Government Notary of the Republic of Paraguay, be permitted to appear at the public hearing. On April 6, 2004, the State sent the originals of the statements that it had sent by fax on March 31, 2004, and enclosed copies of two books.24

46. On April 2, 2004, the Commission presented the affidavits of the witnesses and experts it had offered (supra para. 42). On April 5, 2004, the Commission re-submitted the affidavits and stated that “for reasons of force majeure” it had been unable to obtain sworn statements from witnesses Walter Javier Riveros Rojas, Pablo Emmanuel Rojas and Antonio Delgado. It also enclosed a video of the testimony given by Messrs. Francisco Ramón Adorno, Osmar López Verón and Raúl Guillermo Ramírez Bogado, and another with the testimony of Jorge Bogarín González and expert witness Carlos Arestivo. The Commission informed the Court that the affidavit of Mr. Jorge Daniel Toledo would be sent by the representatives. On April 7, 2004, the Commission sent the originals of the statements it had sent by facsimile on April 2, 2004. The representatives did not file any comments with regard to those statements.

47. On April 7, 2004, the President decided not to authorize the State’s request that some of its witnesses and experts be permitted to appear at the public hearing (supra para. 45), as the President deemed it unnecessary.

48. On April 18, 2004, the representatives informed the Court that Mr. Eduardo Gallardo was unable to provide an expert opinion. They also reported that Mrs. Liliana Tojo would be joining the team of representatives at the public hearing. They further reported that witnesses Pedro Iván Peña and Raúl Esteban Portillo, former inmates at the Center, would be unable to attend the public hearing. They therefore begged the Court’s permission to present a video at that hearing where the two young men in question would give their testimony. On April 21, 2004, on instructions from the Court, the Secretariat asked the representatives to send the video so that it might be provided to the other parties, in order that they, in turn, might make whatever comments they deemed pertinent. That way, the video would not have to be shown during the public hearing. On April 26, 2004, the representatives sent the testimony of Raúl Esteban Portillo and Pedro Iván Peña, both in writing and on video. Those statements were not made in the presence of a person authorized by law to authenticate documents and statements (infra para. 72). On May 18, 2004, the Commission informed the Court that it had no comments with regard to those statements. On June 10, 2004, the State informed the Court that it was reserving the right to comment on these pieces of testimony when it presented its final written submissions.

49. On April 19, 2004, the representatives reported that they did not, for the moment, have any clarification or observation on the affidavits given by the witnesses and experts at the Office of the Chief Government Notary of the Republic of Paraguay and submitted by the State (supra para. 45).

50.On April 21, 2004, the Commission informed the Court that “for reasons of force majeure,” witnesses Miguel Ángel Coronel Ramírez and César Fidelino Ojeda Acevedo would not be appearing at the hearing.

51. On April 27, 2004, the State presented its comments on the affidavits presented by the Commission (supra para. 46) and by the representatives (supra para. 44). It objected to the testimony of Mrs. Silvia Portillo Martínez, offered by the representatives, and the expert testimony of Mr. Carlos Arestivo, offered by the Commission. As for the affidavit by Jorge Bogarín González, a witness offered by the Commission, the State asked the Court to request from the Ministry of Justice and Labor “copies of the pertinent official court orders issued by that former magistrate in his capacity as a criminal court judge.”

52.On April 28, 2004, the Commission presented its comments on the affidavits that the State’s witnesses and experts gave at the Office of the Chief Government Notary of the Republic of Paraguay (supra para. 45). In those comments, the Commission objected to portions of the testimony given by Fernando Vicente Canillas Vera, Estanislao Balbuena Jara and Teresa de Jesús Almirón Fernández. It also indicated that it had no comments on the affidavits given by the representatives’ witnesses (supra para. 44).

53. On April 28, 2004, the Commission asked the Court to consult the respondent State about the appendixes that some of the State’s witnesses had supplied when they made their statements at the Office of the Chief Government Notary of the Republic of Paraguay. On May 1, 2004, the Court asked the State to submit the documents in question. That request was reiterated on May 31, 2004. On June 3, 2004, the State presented copies of the documents that some of the State’s witnesses had provided at the time they made their statements at the Office of the Chief Government Notary of the Republic of Paraguay.

54. On May 3 and 4, 2004, at a public hearing on preliminary objections and eventual merits, reparations and costs, the Court heard the testimony of the witnesses and experts offered by the Inter-American Commission and the representatives. The Court also heard the final oral arguments of the Inter-American Commission, the representatives and the State.

There appeared before the Court:

for the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights:

Santiago Canton, delegate;

Ignacio J. Álvarez, advisor, and

Lilly Ching, advisor;

for the representatives:

Viviana Krsticevic, Executive Director of CEJIL;

Raquel Talavera, attorney with CEJIL;

María Clara Galvis, attorney with CEJIL, and

Liliana Tojo, attorney with CEJIL;

for the State:

Julio Duarte Van Humbeck, agent;

Mario Sandoval, alternate agent;

Alberto Sandoval Diez, advisor, and

Edgar Taboada Insfrán, advisor;

witnesses offered by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights:

Dionicio Vega;

Rosalía Figueredo Britez;

Juan Antonio y Concepción de la Vega Elorza, and

María Zulia Giménez González;

witnesses offered by the representatives:

Teofista Domínguez Riveros, and

Felipa Benicia Valdéz;

expert witnesses offered by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights:



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