Thursday, August 14, 2014

Another dramatic jurisdictional ruling in Chile

There has been another significant decision limiting the scope of military jurisdiction in Chile. Details appear here. In a nutshell, a panel of the Supreme Court has unanimously held that a case arising from the death of a civilian in a police van must be transferred from military to civilian jurisdiction. The victim died of asphyxiation and high temperature within the van. From a news account:
The Supreme Court found that the military justice system does not provide the necessary guarantees and the protection of the rights of victims in a recent ruling concerning merchant Jorge Aravena, who was killed after being forced by police officers from the First Precinct of Rancagua to remain inside a police van in February this year. This was one of the reasons why it decided to transfer the process to the [civilian] court of Rancagua. [Rough Google translation.]
The victim was held in the van for hours after a military prosecutor had ordered his release, according to this account. He had been arrested for failing to pay his bill at a restaurant.

For an earlier ruling limiting jurisdiction click here.

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