Jimmy Guerrero, Ramón Molina y familiares, Venezuela

A selection of key paragraphs can be found below the case report.


60. The Commission has established that “extrajudicial or summary executions are characterized by being deliberate and illegitimate deprivations of life on the part of State agents, generally acting under order or at least the consent or acquiescence of the authorities. Therefore, extrajudicial executions are illegal actions committed by those who have been given power originally intended to protect and guarantee the safety and life of the people.”

61. In cases in which there is controversy regarding the state participation in serious human rights violations, the Commission has indicated that, given the existence of signs that imply a direct attribution of international responsibility from the State, the authorities in charge of the investigation shall make all the necessary efforts to clarify the possible responsibilities or connections of state authorities in a violation to the right to life. In this way, the State has the obligation to carry out a detailed, serious and diligent investigation to determine the veracity or distort the signs of the participation of state agents. Otherwise, the Commission has granted probative value to evidence that has not been duly investigated.

64. The Commission recalls that in cases of extrajudicial executions, depending on their characteristics, it is possible to deduce other human rights violations, as the right to personal integrity. In this terms, the InterAmerican Court has established that “it is reasonable to presume that, in the moments prior to the deprivation of liberty [the executed] suffered deep fear before the real and imminent danger that the event would end with their own death, as it effectively happened” which results in the violation to the right of personal integrity set forth in Article 5 of the American Convention. The Commission reiterates that, in certain circumstances, the real threat of the arbitrary deprivation of liberty constitutes, by itself, an inhuman treatment.

73. In conclusion, the Commission finds that the records of harassment and violence, their coincidence and temporal closeness with the deaths, the State’s indifference towards the complaints filed for these records, as well as the above-mentioned contexts, the lack of police cooperation in the investigation as well as the signs of concealment, the public discrediting comments against Jimmy Guerrero, the events that relate State agents to the deaths under consideration, and the lack of judicial determination of the perpetrators, as a whole, are sufficient and consistent signs to establish the State participation in the death of Jimmy Guerrero, and in the related death of his uncle Ramón Molina. Consequently, they are directly attributable to the Venezuelan State.


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