REPORT No. 65/09 PETITION 616-06 ADMISSIBILITY JUAN CARLOS FLORES BEDREGAL BOLIVIA August 4, 2009 I. SUMMARY 1. On June 14, 2006 the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter “the Inter-American Commission,” “the Commission,” or “the IACHR”) received a petition submitted by Olga Flores Bedregal (hereinafter also “the petitioner”), representing Mr. Juan Carlos Flores Bedregal (hereinafter also “the alleged victim” or “Mr. Flores Bedregal”), alleging violation by the State of Bolivia (hereinafter also “Bolivia,” “the State,” or “the Bolivian State”) of rights enshrined in Article 3 (recognition of juridical personality), Article 4 (right to life), Article 5 (right to humane treatment), Article 7 (right to personal liberty), Article 8 (right to a fair trial), and Article 24 (right to equal protection) as they relate to Article 1.1 (obligation to respect and guarantee rights) of the American Convention on Human Rights (hereinafter also “the American Convention,” “the Convention,” or “the ACHR”). 2. The petitioner alleged that in the context of the coup d’état led by Luís García Meza, on July 17, 1980 her brother, Juan Carlos Flores Bedregal, was forcibly disappeared in an attack on the Bolivian Workers’ Union (Central Obrera Boliviana – hereinafter also “the COB”). She noted that the alleged victim was last seen at the facilities of the Army General Staff, oppressive force of the period. She indicated that although relatives have petitioned all judicial bodies as well as other branches of government, the events still go unpunished as the circumstances of the disappearance have not been made clear, those responsible have not been punished, and the mortal remains of Mr. Flores Bedregal have not been located. She emphasized that there is a court order to declassify the army’s files, an order that has not been carried out. 3. For its part, the State reported on internal procedures to investigate and provide punishment for the events. It noted that former President Luís García Meza was subjected to a trial of responsibilities (juicio de responsabilidades) that culminated in 1993 with a conviction against García Meza and his collaborators. The State indicated that later, in 1999, a criminal proceeding was filed against several persons regarding what had happened to Juan Carlos Flores Bedregal. It noted that first and second instance decisions were issued in this proceeding, with some of the accused being convicted and others acquitted, and that the cassation appeal filed by the parties is now pending. The State asked the Commission to take into consideration the complexity of the matter, the actions taken by judicial authorities and family members, as well as the filing of different defensive motions by the accused. 4. After examining the positions of the parties in the light of the admissibility requirements established in Articles 46 and 47 of the Convention, the Commission concluded that it is competent to hear the complaint and that the petition is admissible based on the alleged violation of rights enshrined in Articles 3, 4, 5, 7, and 8 of the American Convention as they relate to Article 1.1 of that instrument. By virtue of the principle of iura novit curia, the Commission incorporated the possible violation of Articles 13 and 25 of the American Convention and Articles I and III of the Inter-American Convention on Forced Disappearance of Persons. The Commission concluded that the petition is inadmissible in terms of the alleged violation of Article 24 of the American Convention. As a result, the Commission decided to notify the parties, to make this Admissibility Report public, and include it in its Annual Report.