2 7. On November 4, 2009, a working meeting was held during the IACHR’s 137th period of sessions. On that occasion, the State agreed to provide Melba del Carmen Suárez with free medical care through the state health network, without that implying any kind of acceptance of international 2 responsibility. 8. On December 14, 2009 the petitioner submitted information, which was conveyed to the State for its comments, on January 13, 2010, along with additional information furnished by the petitioner at the aforesaid working meeting. On that same date, the Commission asked the petitioner for information on the steps taken by the State to comply with the commitment assumed at the working meeting. 9. The petitioner submitted his response on February 22, 2010, which was conveyed to the State for its comments on March 16, 2010. The State submitted its final comments on April 13, 2010, which were forwarded to petitioner for information purposes the following April 23. On March 28, 2011, the petitioner submitted additional information, which was conveyed to the State for information purposes on April 1, 2011. On May 3 and 24, 2011, respectively, the State and the petitioner submitted additional information, which was conveyed to the other party for information purposes. III. POSITIONS OF THE PARTIES A. Petitioner 10. As background, the petitioner states that on July 1, 2000, Melba del Carmen Suárez Peralta was operated on by Dr. Emilio Guerrero Gutiérrez at the private Minchala Clinic in the city of Guayaquil for “possible appendicitis problems.” He indicates that three days after the surgery the patient experienced complications and had to undergo a further surgery in another health center. As a result of the second surgery it was determined that a “dirty surgery” had been performed and she had to undergo several medical procedures. 11. The petitioner states that an accusation of medical malpractice against Dr. Emilio Guerrero Gutiérrez was filed by Melba Peralta Mendoza, the victim’s mother. Between August 2000 and May 2001 the preliminary investigation began, the accusation was formalized and formal charges were 3 issued against Guerrero Gutiérrez. In addition, the petitioner indicates that in June 2001 Mrs. Peralta Mendoza requested that the investigation be expanded to cover Dr. Wilson Benjamín Minchala Pinchú, owner of the Minchala Clinic, for having allowed Mr. Guerrero Gutiérrez to practice medicine without the authorization of the Ministry of Health. Between August and September of 2001, the judge ordered the investigation and trial commencement deed to be expanded to cover Dr. Minchala Pinchú and the accusation was formalized against Mr. Minchala and Mr. Guerrero. 12. The petitioner indicates that in October 2001 the reopening of the summary was ordered, the following November the investigation was concluded and in May 2002 the Prosecutor requested the nullification of all previous proceedings. In addition, in February 2003, a Resolution was handed down against Emilio Guerrero, his arrest was ordered and, since he was a fugitive from justice, the proceedings against him were suspended until he either appeared or was captured. In September 2004, Guerrero requested the Judge to rule that statutory limitations had been triggered because more than four years had passed since the issuing of the trial commencement deed. The petitioner indicates that in June 2005 the First Criminal Tribunal assumed competence for the proceedings and in September 2005, it ruled that statutory limitations had been triggered. Consequently, Melba Peralta Mendoza requested that the 2 Annex 79. Working meeting minutes signed on November 4, 2009. Annex 2 of the petitioner’s submission received on December 14, 2009. 3 The petitioner indicates that the crime of medical malpractice is described in articles 436, 456 y 457 of the Ecuadorian Criminal Code of1971, but that it only has as passive subjects those that have caused harm administering a substance. Original petition received by the IACHR on February 23, 2006.