July 14, 2013
The Court of Appeals of Temuco accepted this Saturday July 6 an appeal on behalf of Mapuche minors from the communities Trapilwe and Mawidanche, from the sector Quepe, in the commune of Freire, which was filed against the Chilean Investigative Police (IDP) following a proceeding undertaken last April 30 in the area.
That day in the early morning hours, PDI personnel conducted a widespread raid on the aforementioned communities, with large deployment of troops, vehicles, overflight of institutional helicopters, intimidating and causing panic in the children sleeping in their homes with their families who were violently awakened.
The appeal includes testimonies from a total of 12 people, adults and children, in which they recount details of the searches conducted and the excesses committed by police during the course of the raid, which consist mainly of verbal abuse of the inhabitants of the Lof, threats and demands to hand over any weapons.
Those affected by the raid had to spend long periods handcuffed in the presence of the rest of their families, while the troops searched the interior of the homes, seizing various items and pressuring the minors for information, who were offered candy by them and even the flashlights that were being used in exchange for them to say "where the weapons were hidden" that supposedly existed in the hands of members of the communities, in a clear attack on the dignity and integrity of the Mapuche children.
The legal action was filed by attorney Maria del Rosario Salamanca, of the Mapuche Public Criminal Defense of Temuco, in favor of 12 minors and Coliman Veronica, 24 years old and 6 months pregnant, including this child to be born in the appeal. The appeal also includes the affected people whose homes were raided without a warrant: Hugo Cayuman Malleo and his family group, Emelina Huenchulaf Coñoman, Roberto Marivil Marivil and Braulio Yefilaf Montoya.
The sentence of the second room states that "the deployment of force made by the Police Department confronted with the goal to achieve (the arrest of three persons and the location of weapons) and the poor outcome (only one firearm was located) and, which is crucial to this Court, the presence of large numbers of indigenous children in the place where the investigative search was carried out allow the Court to conclude that there has been a violation and exists the risk of new violations of the rights to personal freedom and individual security of the respondents".
It adds that "on these grounds and also seen the provisions of Article 21 of the Constitution of the Republic [...] is accepted the habeas corpus protection filed by the appellants in this case, only insofar as it instructs the Investigations Police of Chile that future investigative proceedings that affect the indigenous children for whom the appeal was filed are to be executed with strict adherence to the provisions of Article 214 of the Criminal Procedure Code".