The complaint, which represents Sandra Rodríguez, requested two years in prison for Carlos Zalazar, Moses and Adolfo Soto and Mario Rinzafri, former police chiefs convicted of abuse of authority, who led and carried out the repression of April 4, 2007, in which he was assassinated the teacher Carlos Fuentealba. For Jorge Garrido they requested a sentence of 1 year and 10 months, since at that time it had a lower hierarchy. In all cases they required disqualification for twice as long.
The court -made up of Luis Giorgetti, Diego Chavarría Ruiz and Raúl Aufranc- He found them guilty on March 16.. He considered that in the operation, ordered by ex-governor Jorge Sobisch (MPN), an indiscriminate use of force. That day, the ATEN union planned to block the road, at the height of the Arroyito bridge, which never materialized.
For the judges, the defendants, due to their rank, controlled the procedure, and therefore should have avoided arbitrariness, in addition to guaranteeing the right to protest, as well as the right of free transit.
Ricardo Mendaña and Marcelo Medrano, plaintiff lawyers, stated that the sentence proved that there was an “abusive performance” of state violence in the second and third sections of the operation, in which the protesters took refuge in the YPF service station and the police continued to shoot there with the danger that this entailed. He also chased them cross-country, when they were off the road. This it frightened them, and put their physical and emotional integrity at risk.
They added that these former bosses were “experts”, as Sobisch himself called them, and that they should have acted professionally. They highlighted the duration of the procedure, which began at the bridge and ended approximately 5.5 kilometerswhen Corporal José Darío Poblete shot Fuentealba with a federal pistol, less than 7 meters awaywhile leaving the place.
They assured that the witnesses who were heard at this stage were mostly relatives and former co-workers who highlighted the professional career of the accused. They pointed out that it was a defense of the “police institution.”
They stated that the operation produced a “social and current damage»since many of the people who participated in the demonstration are still living the consequences of that repression today.
Mendaña emphasized the intensity, the persistence, the lack of humanity. Regarding the passage of time, a sentence of 16 years from the events, he said that it cannot be thought of as an abstract category. He maintained that in this case no one was detained or lost their job, on the contrary, all were able to achieve their promotions in the force.
Defender Gustavo Lucero asked for two months for Soto and Rinzafri, and one month for Garrido. In the event that the sentence contemplates a disqualification, he requested that it be specific. He listed as mitigating the “excellent concept” held of the former bosses, the lack of criminal and disciplinary records, their acknowledgments, their behavior in the process (they were never declared in absentia) and the suffering that the passage of time entailed for his family. time.
The defense of Zalazar, in charge of Rubén Casas, required a month on hold for the former head of the force, with the same consideration regarding disqualification. In line with Lucero, she mentioned the same extenuating factors.
The passage of time “benefited him”
Benito Matus was convicted of aggravated weapons abuse. The court understood that on April 4, the officer who had gone to bring breakfast to his colleagues shot him with a 12/70 shotgun. to the car in which three teachers were fleeing: Angélica Cisterna, Marcelo Marenco and Teresa Gómez.
He was the only cash accused by chief prosecutor Maximiliano Breide Obeid. He asked for 3 years in prison plus twice the disqualification. The complaint adhered to the petition.
The official based the amount of the penalty on which Matus was found guilty of the crime of harassment in 2002. This is no longer considered a criminal record Because ten years have passed. However, for the prosecutor in 2007 he did compute and other conduct was required of him. In fact, if he had been tried and sentenced immediately, the sentence that would correspond to him would be effective.
He was of the opinion that the passage of time, far from harming him, benefited him, not only because of this, but because it did not hinder his career: he currently has the rank of inspector commissioner in Chos Malal. He evaluated it as a mitigation exclusively for the suffering that this lengthy process caused his family. He also pondered his behavior in the case.
Matus is the only police officer on duty. Photo Matías Subat.
Regarding the aggravating circumstances, he said that the defendant he knew how to use the weapon, he had the shotgunner course, and even so he fired a direct shot that is prohibited.
Defender Juan Coto stated that the prosecutor’s request was disproportionate and requested the minimum: one year and four months. He affirmed that in the event that the court imposed a disqualification, that this be for six months.
For all six, the penalties to be imposed will be conditional compliance. The court will deliver the verdict on Monday, June 26, at 1:30 p.m., in the Ciudad Judicial.
Once this stage is completed, the defenses will be able to challenge.