Thursday, January 26, 2017

Lack of courtesy lands colonel in prison

Colonel Edgar Dure of the Paraguayan Air Force has spent four months in detention in the military garrison known as Vinas Cue, without having been formally charged or sentenced for a crime, for lack of courtesy to General Braulio Piris, the Commander of the Paraguayan Armed Forces, his military superior, at a social event (he failed to extend his hand to the General at the social event). Pursuant to Paraguayan military law an individual has to be indicted within 20 days and six times that amount of time has elapsed while Dure is held in detention with convicted prisoners.

The facts, according to his defense lawyer, indicate that his right to due process and a presumption of innocence have been violated.

According to Dure's mother, his family has been ostracized and is without financial resources. His wife recently departed for Spain with two of their three children, which  has affected Dure emotionally.  His mother noted that her son was friends with General Piris but that the commander had denied him a commission to Taiwan and since then there was enmity.

Dure complained in a letter to the President.  It is assumed that he will be kept in detention for a year and then given a dishonorable discharge.  General Jose Mieres, the head of the Paraguayan Military Tribunal, says that Dure is in detention for offenses committed, not for disobedience.  He was told to present himself to the Commander by the General's guard, he ignored the order, knocking down the guard and leaving the premises without permission. General Mieres stated that there are sanctions for insubordination and lack of discipline and that these were the issues in this case, as well as the offense against the General's guard.  For a misdemeanor you can get 90 days in detention, for a crime, up to a year, he explained.

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