REPORT No. 4/15 CASE 12.690 MERITS V.R.P AND V.P.C. NICARAGUA APRIL 13, 2016 I. SUMMARY 1. On October 28, 2002, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter the “Inter-American Commission,” “Commission,” or “IACHR”) received a petition lodged by Mrs. V.P.C. (hereinafter the “petitioner” or “V.P.C.”). The petition alleges the international responsibility of the Republic of Nicaragua (hereinafter the “State,” “Nicaraguan State,” or “Nicaragua”) for irregularities and impunity in the criminal proceedings for the crime of rape perpetrated against her daughter, the child V.R.P. 2. The petitioner alleges that her daughter V.R.P. was raped by her father on two occasions when she was aged nine. The petitioner alleges numerous irregularities throughout the criminal process that resulted in its unreasonably long length and impunity. Furthermore, she alleges that the medical examinations of her daughter by the State did not comply with minimum international standards and revictimized her. She maintains that her daughter was not provided with comprehensive medical attention. The petitioner also alleges that she and her daughter were discriminated against by various State officials during the proceedings because it was a case regarding sexual violence. 3. The State denies the petitioner’s allegations. It argues that the criminal process complied with the legal requirements established by the Nicaraguan legal system. It maintains that after receiving the complaint for rape it carried out multiple procedures in order to clarify the facts. It notes that the decisions adopted by domestic courts adequately assessed the evidence submitted. It maintains that the medical examinations conducted on V.R.P. complied with domestic procedures, and that the best interest of the child was taken into account at all times. 4. After analyzing the available information, the Commission concludes that the Nicaraguan State is responsible for violating the rights to personal integrity, judicial guarantees, the protection of private life, the rights of children, equality before the law and non-discrimination, and judicial protection established in Articles 5, 8, 11, 19, 24 and 25 of the American Convention on Human Rights (hereinafter the “American Convention” or “Convention”) in connection with Articles 1.1 and 2 of the same instrument, to the detriment of V.R.P. Furthermore, the IACHR concludes that the State is responsible for violating the rights to personal integrity, judicial guarantees and judicial protection established in Articles 5, 8 and 25 of the American Convention in connection with Article 1.1 of the same instrument, to the detriment of V.P.C. Additionally, the Commission considers that the State violated Article 7 of the Inter-American Convention on the Prevention, Punishment and Eradication of Violence Against Women (hereinafter the “Convention of Belém do Pará), to the detriment of V.R.P. and V.P.C. The IACHR formulated its recommendations to the State of Nicaragua upon the basis of these conclusions. II. PROCESSING BEFORE THE COMMISSION 5. Mrs. V.P.C. submitted her initial petition on October 28, 2002. The process from the petition’s submittal to the decision on its admissibility is detailed in Admissibility Report 3/09 from February 11, 2009.1 The IACHR concluded in said report that the petition was admissible with respect to the rights enshrined in Articles 5, 8, 11, 24 and 25 of the American Convention in connection with Article 1.1 of the same instrument. 1 See, IACHR, Report No. 3/09, Petition 4408-02, Admissibility, V.R.P and V.P.C, Nicaragua, February 11, 2009. Available at: https://www.cidh.oas.org/annualrep/2009eng/Nicaragua4408.02eng.htm.