I.

SUMMARY

REPORT No. 111/18
CASE 12.786
MERITS REPORT
LUIS EDUARDO GUACHALÁ CHIMBÓ AND NEXT OF KIN
ECUADOR
OCTOBER 5, 2018

1.
On March 1, 2007, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter “the
Commission”, “the Inter-American Commission” or “the IACHR”) received a petition submitted by the Human
Rights Clinic of the Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador (Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador), the
Foundation for Assistance in Human Rights (Fundación Regional de Asesoría en Derechos Humanos) and the
Ecumenical Commission on Human Rights (Comisión Ecuménica de Derechos Humanos) (hereinafter “the
petitioners”). The petitioners alleged the international responsibility of the Republic of Ecuador (hereinafter
“the State”, “the Ecuadorian State” or “Ecuador”) for the disappearance of Luis Eduardo Guachalá Chimbó in
January 2004 while he was in a psychiatric public hospital in the city of Quito. The petitioners indicated that to
date the State has not clarified what happened to Mr. Guachalá and nor have his whereabouts been determined.
2.
For its part, the State argued that Mr. Guachalá would have escaped the institution, therefore
the State would not bear responsibility for his disappearance. The State held that an investigation was initiated
with the objective to clarify the events and to determine the eventual responsibilities.

3.
After analyzing the information available, the Commission concluded that the State is
responsible for the violation of the rights to the recognition of juridical personality, life, humane treatment,
personal liberty, equality and non-discrimination, and health, and to judicial guarantees and judicial protection,
established in Articles 3, 4(1), 5(1), 7(1), 7(3), 8(1), 13(1), 24, 25(1) and 26 of the American Convention in
relation to the obligations established in Articles 1(1) and 2 of the same instrument, to the detriment of Luis
Eduardo Guachalá Chimbó and his family members in the terms explained throughout this merits report.
II.

PROCEEDINGS BEFORE THE COMMISSION

4.
On March 1, 2007, the IACHR received the initial petition. The detail of the proceedings before
the Commission until the decision of admissibility of the case is in the admissibility report No. 141/10 of 1
November 2010. 1

5.
On November 10, 2010, the IACHR notified the parties of the admissibility report. In said
communication, the Commission made itself available to the parties in order to reach a friendly settlement. On
May 25, 2011, the petitioners submitted a communication in which they stated that they did not wish to initiate
a friendly settlement. In said communication, they also presented their observations on the merits. On
December 23, 2011, the State submitted its observations on the merits.
6.
Subsequently, the Commission received communications from both parties, which were duly
transferred. Additionally, on April 4, 2016, within the framework of its 157th Period of Sessions, the IACHR
carried out a public hearing of the case in which both parties participated. 2
III.

POSITION OF THE PARTIES

A.

Position of the Petitioners

7.
The petitioners argue that the State is responsible for the disappearance of Mr. Guachalá. The
petitioners stated that the alleged victim, who is a person with mental disability, disappeared in January 2004

1 IACHR, Report No. 141/10, Petition 247-07, Admissibility, Luis Eduardo Guachalá Chimbó, Ecuador, November 1, 2010. Available at:
www.cidh.org/annualrep/2010eng/ECAD247-07EN.DOC.
2 IACHR, Public hearing, April 4, 2016.

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