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Vidal de Velásquez and Pablo Andrés Velásquez Paiz. The Commission has further decided to notify
the parties of this decision, and to publish it and include it in its Annual Report to the OAS General
Assembly.
II.

PROCEDURES BEFORE THE COMMISSION

5.
On December 10, 2007, the Commission received the petition and assigned it
number 1560-07. On March 16, 2010, the IACHR forwarded the pertinent parts of the petition to
the State of Guatemala, requesting it to submit its response within two months, in accordance with
the provisions of Article 30.2 of the Commission’s Rules of Procedure. The response of the State
was received on May 19, 2010. That communication was duly forwarded to the petitioners.
6.
The IACHR received further information from the petitioners on March 19, 2010. That
information was duly forwarded to the State.
III.

POSITION OF THE PARTIES

A.

The petitioners

7.
The petitioners allege that the State of Guatemala failed in its duty to investigate
with due diligence the murder of Claudina Isabel Velásquez, a 19-year old law student, and they
contend that the case continues to go unpunished. They report that the murder of the alleged
victim is part of a general situation of impunity and denial of justice faced by women who are
victims of violence in Guatemala, and that it has been documented both nationally and
internationally.
8.
They report that Claudina Isabel Velásquez disappeared on August 12, 2005. They
indicate that the last communication with her family was at 11:45 pm on that day, when she told
them that she was at a party and that she would be home after midnight. They further state that
when she did not arrive home, the parents of Claudina Isabel Velásquez began looking for her. They
tried to file a complaint at 3 am and at 5 am on August 13, but the agents of the National Civilian
Police refused to receive them, advising them that they had to wait until 24 hours had passed
following her disappearance. Moreover, they told the parents that she had most likely gone off with
her boyfriend. The authorities agreed to accept the complaint at 8:30 am, but did not initiate a
search for Claudina Isabel Velásquez.
9.
According to the petitioners, the parents, next-of-kin, and friends continued to
search for Claudina Isabel Velásquez, when at 10:30 am on that same day, family members
received a call from a friend who reported that an unidentified body with the characteristics of
Claudina Isabel Velásquez was at the morgue of the Judiciary’s Forensic Medical Service.
The
family members went to the morgue, where they identified their daughter. They withdrew her body
to make preparations for her funeral, with the authorization of the officials of the Forensic Medical
Service, who told them that there were no further investigative procedures to be conducted. They
contend that the alleged victim had been beaten, raped, and murdered by a shot to the forehead.
10.
They report that during the wake, officials of the Public Ministry belonging to the
Group of Crime Scene Specialists appeared to take the fingerprints of the corpse. They indicate
that the family felt offended and humiliated by this, since this type of evidence should have been
taken earlier.
11.
As regards an investigation into the facts, they report that there was no inquiry or
investigative measures during the first forty-eight hours. They maintain that the Public Ministry
interviewed the parents of the alleged victim forty days after the event, and that it did not

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