REPORT Nº 22/051
PETITION 12.270
ADMISSIBILITY
JOHAN ALEXIS ORTIZ HERNANDEZ
VENEZUELA
February 25, 2005
I.

SUMMARY

1. On March 15, 2000, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter
“the Commission” or the “IACHR”) received a petition lodged by Edgar Humberto Ortiz
Ruiz and Zaida Hernández de Arellano (hereinafter “the petitioners”) claiming that the
Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela (hereinafter, “the State” or “the Venezuelan State”) is
responsible for the death of their son, Johan Alexis Ortiz Hernández, which occurred in
the facilities of the National Guard School of Cordero, on February 15, 1998.
2. The petitioners claim that the State is responsible for violations of the rights to life
(Article 4), personal integrity (Article 5), a fair trial (Article 8), and judicial protection
(Article 25) of the American Convention on Human Rights (hereinafter “the
Convention” or the “American Convention”), as well as the generic obligation to
respect and ensure the rights protected in Article 1(1) of that instrument.
3. The petitioners claim that the petition fulfilled the admissibility requirements set
forth in the American Convention. With regard to the exhaustion of domestic remedies,
the petitioners claim grounds for exception to the exhaustion requirement due to
unwarranted legal delays in the criminal investigation, which constitute a denial of
justice in this case.
4. In response, the Venezuelan State requested that the petition be declared
inadmissible. To this end, it argued that the petitioners had admitted in their written
documents that domestic remedies to resolve the legal situations presumably infringed
by the Venezuelan State had not been exhausted. It further argued that this case
involves concurrency of international legal action. The State therefore requests that
this petition be declared inadmissible pursuant to Articles 46(1) (a) and 47 (d) of the
American Convention.
5. After analyzing the positions of the parties, the Commission concluded that it was
competent to rule on the petition presented by the alleged victims and that the case
was admissible according to the provisions of Articles 46 and 47 of the American
Convention. Consequently, the Commission decided to notify the parties, publish this
admissibility report, and include it in its Annual Report.
II.

PROCESSING BY THE COMMISSION

6. On March 15, 2000, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights received a
petition lodged by Edgar Humberto Ortiz Ruiz and Zaida Hernández de Arellano
claiming that the Venezuelan State was responsible for the death of their son, Johan
Alexis Ortiz Hernández, which occurred in the facilities of the National Guard School of
Cordero on February 15, 1998. The IACHR registered the petition as Case 12.270 and
forwarded the pertinent portions to the State on April 26, 2000, for its observations.

1 Commissioner Freddy Gutiérrez, of Venezuelan nationality, did not participate in the deliberations and vote on this
report, in accordance with Article 17(2) (a) of the Commission’s Rules of Procedure.

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