The Freedom of ex-Political Prisoner Roberto Paciencia Cruz is at Risk
San Cristóbal de Las Casas, Chiapas
February 2, 2017
The working group No Estamos Todxs and the centre of human rights Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas AC, express our concern regarding the risk to the freedom of our compañero Roberto Paciencia Cruz (Roberto Paciencia) who is an Indigenous Tsostil of Chenalhó, Chiapas and an adherent to the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle.
Roberto was detained August 9th, 2013 and accused of abduction. During the moment of his detention and incarceration, acts of torture, arbitrary detention and unfair trial were documented, violating the rights of personal freedom and integrity, personal security and access to due process.
Since his detention, and throughout the judicial process that lasted three years and three months, Roberto did not cease his struggle against the injustices of the corrupt Mexican political system. On November 26, 2016, he was released by acquittal under the recognition of his innocence on part of the Judge of the criminal branch of the judicial district of San Cristóbal de Las Casas.
However, the public prosecutor has filed an appeal against the acquittal, despite not having been able to sustain the accusation against our compañero Paciencia during the trial, and in spite of the mentioned violations against him.
The arbitrary and unjust detention to which Roberto was subjected has brought physical and psychological consequences for him and his family, disrupting his life and generating poverty in his family.
According to available information, the study of the case and the proposal of appeal will be under the charge of Residing Judge C, of the Regional Mixed Collegiate Courtroom Zone 3, of San Cristóbal de Las Casas. Judge Ramiro Joel Ramírez Sánchez will head the case. The judges that integrate the courtroom will vote upon the proposal in the middle of February
The probability of his acquittal being modified has generated uncertainty, stress and anxiety for Roberto, as well as for his family. During the months following his release, Roberto has moved to San Cristóbal de Las Casas, where he has tried to continue his life together with his family. Right now he is working and continuing the struggle.
During the years that he was detained in CERSS Number 5, in San Cristóbal de Las Casas, he continued to defend the right of the prisoners, showing solidarity and commitment to the imprisoned survivors of torture and politically motivated criminalization. He did not stop denouncing the many abuses committed by the authorities, like the unjust and corrupt penitentiary and judicial system that discriminates against people for being poor and Indigenous.
The working group No Estamos Todxs and the Centre for Human Rights Fray Bartolomé de Las Casas AC, reiterate our concern regarding the risk to the freedom of Roberto Paciencia and we urge the judge Ramiro Joel Ramírez Sánchez and the members of the Regional Mixed Collegiate Courtroom Zone 3, of San Cristóbal de Las Casas, to confirm the acquittal, for not having legal means to revoke the sentence.
To the adherents of the Sixth Declaration of the Lacandona Jungle and the national and internal civil society, we ask you to be attentive to the resolution of the Regional Mixed Collegiate Courtroom Zone 3, and to carry out solidarity actions for Roberto Paciencia Cruz and his family
Working Group No Estamos Todxs
Centre of Human Rights Fray Bartolomé de las Casas AC
Translated by Palabras Rebeldes