REPORT No. 6/15
PETITION 518-03
REPORT ON ADMISSIBILITY
JORGE VILLARROEL AND OTHERS
ECUADOR
JANUARY 29, 2015
I.

SUMMARY

1.
On July 15, 2003, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter “the
Commission” or “the IACHR”) received a petition1 on behalf of several officers of the National Police of Ecuador
— Jorge Villarroel Merino, Mario Rommel Cevallos Moreno, Jorge Coloma Gaybor, Fernando López Ortiz,
Amílcar Ascazubi Albán, and Patricio Vinuesa Pánchez — (hereinafter “the alleged victims”), alleging the
responsibility of the Republic of Ecuador (hereinafter “the State” or “Ecuador”) for the alleged violation of the
rights enshrined in Articles 1.1 (obligation to respect rights), 7 (personal liberty), 8 (right to a fair trial), 9
(principle of legality and freedom from ex post facto laws), 10 (compensation), 11 (privacy), 21 (property), 24
(equal protection), and 25 (judicial protection) of the American Convention on Human Rights (hereinafter “the
American Convention” or “the Convention”) and in Articles I (life, liberty, and personal security), II (equality
before the law), XVIII (fair trial), XXV (protection against arbitrary arrest), and XXVI (due process of law) of the
American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man (hereinafter “the Declaration”) in criminal proceedings
for the offense of embezzlement brought against the alleged victims.
2.
In turn, the State contends that the claim is inadmissible because domestic remedies were not
exhausted, in that the petition was lodged prior to the conclusion of the work of the domestic courts. It further
contends that the petition does not describe facts tending to establish violations of the rights enshrined in the
Convention and that the judicial remedies brought during the criminal trial were effective, in that they
concluded with the alleged victims’ acquittal.
3.
After analyzing the positions of the parties and in accordance with the requirements set forth
in Articles 46 and 47 of the Convention, the IACHR decides to admit the claims related to the alleged violation
of Articles 7, 8, 9, and 25 of the Convention, in conjunction with Article 1.1 thereof. Similarly, it rules the petition
inadmissible as regards Articles 10, 11, 21, and 24 of the Convention and Articles I, II, XVIII, XXV, and XXVI of
the Declaration. Finally, the IACHR resolves to notify the parties of this report and to order its publication in its
Annual Report to the OAS General Assembly.
II.

PROCESSING BY THE IACHR

4.
The Commission received the petition on July 15, 2003, and additional information on the
following July 21. As part of its preliminary analysis, it asked the petitioner for information on May 18, 2004.
The petitioner submitted additional information on May 21 and 24, June 7, and November 12, 2004, and on
March 10, 2005. The IACHR forwarded the relevant parts of the petition to the State on July 29, 2005.
5.
The petitioner submitted additional information on November 9 and 21, 2005, which was
conveyed to the State on December 19, 2005. On January 9, 2006, Ecuador submitted comments. The petitioner
sent additional information on January 8, February 28, and March 14, 2007, which was conveyed to the State
for its comments on March 29 of that year. Given the lack of any response, the request for the State to comment
was made again on November 15, 2007. On October 7, 2008, the petitioner submitted additional information;
this was conveyed to the State on October 29, 2008, along with a fresh request for it to present the comments
pending since March 29, 2007.

1
The petition was presented by Ms. María Paula Romo, who was later replaced by Mr. Marcelo Dueñas. See para. 7 infra,
Processing by the IACHR.

1

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