REPORT Nº 81/01
CASE 12.228
ALFONSO MARTÍN DEL CAMPO DODD
MEXICO
October 10, 2001
I.

SUMMARY

1.On July 13, 1998, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter “the InterAmerican Commission” or “the IACHR”) received a complaint submitted by Alfonso Martín del
Campo Dodd alleging that the United Mexican States(“the State”)had incurred in international
responsibility through his illegal arrest and torture and his subsequent conviction to serve a
50-year prison term handed down at a trial at which the rules of due process were not
respected, including the use of a confession obtained by means of torture. In a subsequent
communication, the following bodies registered themselves as petitioners: Action by Christians
for the Abolition of Torture (ACAT), the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL), and
the Lawyers’ Committee for Human Rights (LCHR).
2.The petitioners allege that the incidents reported in the complaint constitute a violation of
several provisions of the American Convention on Human Rights (hereinafter the “American
Convention”): right to humane treatment (Article 5), to personal liberty (Article 7), to a fair trial
(Article 8), and to judicial protection (Article 25). They also claim that all the admissibility
requirements set forth in the American Convention have been met. The Mexican State maintains
that no violations of the American Convention are involved, since Mr. Martín del Campo had
access to several courts of law and proceedings wherein due process was respected and torture
was not proven, and because his conviction stands asres judicataand as such cannot be reviewed
by the IACHR. The State therefore asks the Inter-American Commission to declare this petition
inadmissible.
3.Without prejudging the merits of this case, in this report the IACHR concludes that the
petition is admissible in that it meets the requirements set by Articles 46 and 47 of the
American Convention. The Inter-American Commission has therefore decided to notify the
parties of that decision and to continue analyzing the merits of the complaint with respect to
the alleged violations of Articles 5, 7, 8, and 25 of the American Convention.
II.

PROCESSING BY THE INTER-AMERICAN COMMISSION

4.Mr. Martín del Campo submitted additional documentation in a communication on July 17,
1998; the Inter-American Commission replied on August 10, 1998, asking him for additional
information regarding the admissibility requirements contained in Articles 46 and 47 of the
American Convention. The petitioners’ submission of October 27, 1999 was transmitted to the
Mexican State on November 4, 1999, as No. 12.228. The State submitted its comments on
February 2, 2000, which were forwarded to the petitioners on February 17. The petitioners
sent comments and additional information on April 13, 2000, March 22, 2001, and May 31,
2001. The State’s corresponding additional observations were presented on July 21, 2000,
April 21, 2001, and July 9, 2001. On October 1, 2001, the petitioners presented a submission
in which they reported that a final ruling had been handed down in theamparorelief
proceedings in Mexico. The Inter-American Commission held a hearing on this case, attended
by both parties, on October 11, 2000, during its 108th regular session. Both sides requested
extensions, which were granted by the Inter-American Commission. 1
III. POSITIONS OF THE PARTIES REGARDING ADMISSIBILITY
A.

Petitioners

5.According to the petitioners, on May 29, 1992, Mr. Alfonso Martín del Campo Dodd was
asleep at his home (which he shared with his sister Patricia Martín del Campo Dodd, his
brother-in-law Ricardo Zamudio Aldaba, and their three daughters) in Mexico City when, at
around midnight, he heard panicked screams from his sister. While he was on his way to see
1The petitioners filed for extensions on March 16, August 25, November 10, and December 22, 2000, and then again
on February 16, 2001. The State filed for extensions on May 6, 2000, and March 22, 2001.

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