especially Intelligence Battalion 3-16. That battalion received special training in counterinsurgency which gave
them "certainty and conviction that they were entitled to arrest, torture, and execute citizens."6
B. Regarding Herminio Deras and events prior to his death
11. At the time of the facts, Herminio Deras was 42 years old and lived in the city of San Pedro Sulas, in the
department of Cortés. Mr. Deras was a teacher by profession and a Honduran Communist Party leader. He also
advised several trade unions on Honduras' northern coast. 7 According to information provided by the
petitioners, at the time of the fact Mr. Deras' family consisted of: i) his wife, Otilia Flores; ii) his two children
Herminio and Lorena, aged 7 and 11, respectively; iii) his parents Maria Eustaquia García and Domingo Deras;
iv) his siblings, Alba Luz, Irma Isabel, Consuelo, Héctor and Luis Rolando Deras; and v) his nephews, nieces, and
brothers and sisters in law, José Herminio Deras Barahona, Sandra Ivón Hernández Deras, Marlin García, Julio
Cesar Chavarría Banegas, Elba Flores Ortiz, and Cristóbal Hernández Pérez.8
12. The IACHR takes note of the information provided by the petitioners and contained in statements by family
members of Mr. Deras regarding a number of raids, arrests, beatings, and threats against Herminio and several
of his next-of-kin between 1977 and 1982, committed in many cases by State agents.9 Those acts were due to
the participation of Mr. Deras and family members in Communist Party activities and trade union organizations.
They added that, even though complaints had been filed against those acts, no investigation was conducted.
That information was not contested by the State, which also did not produce any documentation to the
contrary. The Commission will now summarize that information:
1977
− Military personnel raided the house of Mr. Deras' mother. Since they did not find him, they hit his
mother on the head with a pistol and threatened to kill her if they couldn't find a mimeograph that Mr.
Deras allegedly had to perform his political activities. Those acts were witnessed by Mr. Deras' sister
Irma Isabel, who was 15 years old at that time.
− Military personnel raided the house of Mr. Deras' father and accused him of operating a clandestine
radio. His father was beaten, tied up and taken out of his home.
− Irma Isabel, Mr. Deras' sister, was arrested along with two other people by State agents for allegedly
distributing the Vanguardia newspaper, produced and published by the Communist Party. All three
were taken to cells pertaining to the National Directorate of Intelligence (hereinafter "DNI") where
they were blindfolded, their hands tied to their feet, and told they would have "the newspaper taken
out of their stomachs if they didn't deliver a copy."
1979
− M r. Deras was detained by State agents for allegedly having instigated a strike by workers at a
textile factory. Mr. Deras “escaped from detention in DNI installations."
1981
− On November 26, members of the Third Infantry Battalion and, destroyed it, and took away several
objects they found in it. At his home, they arrested his wife Otilia Flores and his sister-in-law Elba
Flores. Mr., Deras managed to escape by jumping over the outside wall of his house, Both Otilia and
Elba were taken to the DNI facilities and then transported to Tegucigalpa, where they were threatened,
blindfolded, and denied food and water for days. State agents interrogated them to get them to reveal
National Human Rights Commissioner, The Facts Speak for Themselves: Preliminary Report on Disappeared Persons in Honduras 19801993. Tegucigalpa, 2002, p. 392.
7 Annex 1. Statement by Otilia Flórez Ortiz on August 12, 1998. Attached to judicial file 7159-02. Press release “Acribillan a Herminio
Deras,” La Tribuna newspaper, January 31, 1983. Attached to file 7591-02.
8 Communication from the petitioners, February 2, 2014
9 Communications by the petitioner(s) of August 2, 2010 and February 2, 2014. Annex 1. Statement by Otilia Flórez Ortiz on August 9, 1998.
Statement by Elba Flores Ortiz, on February 6, 2002. Statement by Luis Ronaldo Deras García, on August 12, 1998. Statement by Isabel
Deras García, on August 12, 1998. Attached to judicial file 7159-02. Annex 2. Press releases on the machine gunning of the Deras family
home. Attached to the petitioners’ communication of August 2, 2010. Annex 3. Complaint filed by Otilia Flores Ortiz on February 4, 1983.
Appended to the petitioners’ brief of August 2, 2010.
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