Mexico: Release of women tortured to confess brings glimmer of hope to many others
The release from prison of three women who were subjected to rape and other forms of tortured in 2011 by marines to force them to “confess” to crimes brings a glimmer of hope to hundreds of others who are held behind bars unfairly across Mexico, said Amnesty International.
Denise Lovato, Korina Urtrera and Wendy Díaz each spent more than five years in prison. They walked out of jail in the State of Morelos this morning after a judged acquitted them and ordered their immediate release.
“Denise, Korina and Wendy should have never been imprisoned in the first place."
Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International
“Denise, Korina and Wendy should have never been imprisoned in the first place. Their harrowing stories show the tragic state of human rights in Mexico, where security forces routinely sexually abuse women to secure ‘confessions’ in an attempt to show that they are tackling rampant organized crime,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.
The stories of Denise, Korina and Wendy are featured in a recent groundbreaking Amnesty International investigation into the use of torture and other sexual violence against women in Mexico.
All of the 100 women held in federal prisons interviewed for the report, said they had experienced some form of sexual or psychological abuse during their arrest and interrogation by municipal, state or federal police officers or members of the Army and Navy. Seventy-two said they were sexually attacked during their arrest or in the hours that followed. Thirty-three reported being raped.
Denise, Korina and Wendy are not isolated cases of prolonged imprisonment following rape and torture. Amnesty International recently launched an international campaign calling for the release of Verónica Razo, mother of two, who has also spent more than five years in prison after Federal Police subjected her to 24 hours of torture to force her to “confess”.
“The release of these three women last night should compel authorities to take action on other cases such as that of Verónica Razo, who deserves to be home with her family for Christmas,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas.
“Investigations should now take place into the torture of Denise, Korina and Wendy and those responsible should face justice.”