Don Bauder 9:40 p.m., May 21
A private case, presented by non-governmental organizations, was filed against Mexico before the United Nations’ Committee Against Torture. The case pertains to an alleged illegal arrest and torture that occurred in Tijuana and Rosarito of four men. “It’s the first private case against the Mexican state that’s been presented” said Andrea Meraz, a coordinator with the Geneva-based World Organization Against Torture.
The Mexican Commission for the Defense and Promotion of Human Rights, Citizens’ Human Rights Commission of the Northwest, and the National Human Rights Commission are the organizations responsible for filing the case. All are non-governmental organizations who hope to bring to light the alleged crimes committed by law enforcement and the Mexican military.
The complaint, which was filed Thursday March 15th, will still have to be officially accepted by the committee. If the case is accepted, Mexico will be notified for further investigation into the violation of the four individuals’ rights.
Allegations of torture and illegal arrests are abundant across Mexico as the military has come to the aid of struggling police forces. Complete police forces have been purged in some areas because of corruption. This has left military officers with little law enforcement training in charge of daily policing.
The U.S. Federal Parole Commission recently concluded that an American who was arrested in Ciudad Juarez was tortured while in custody. Shohn Huckabee, the American, was arrested along with a friend for attempting to traffic marijuana. Witnesses state they saw the Mexican military officers plant the drugs on the vehicle. Huckabee was eventually transferred to a U.S. prison and then released early; due to the grounds that he was tortured while in Mexico.