VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN
Case HND 080497.1CC
The International Secretariat of OMCT has received new information in
the following situation in Honduras.
Brief description of the situation :
The International Secretariat was informed in March of the rape of
Fany Cerrato in a police station in Tegucigalpa.
According to information received, in the early morning of Friday,
March 21st, 1997 16 year old street girl Fany Cerrato was raped by a
uniformed officer (sergeant) of the "Fuerza de Seguridad Publica"
At approximately 22:00 hours, Fany Cerrato - who has been in the Casa
Alianza programs in the past - was walking along the Calle Real close
to Bigos (a fast food store) in Tegucigalpa, when an unidentified man
stopped and invited her for something to eat. They drove towards the
Boulevard Morazan and the man stopped and started to give Fany Cerrato
alcoholic drinks. They then drove again for a short period of time and
the man stopped the car near the Honduras Maya Hotel and started to
sexually abuse the minor inside the car.
During the time Fany Cerrato was being abused, two uniformed members
of the FUSEP came up to the car. According to Fany Cerrato's statement
to the Attorney General's Office, "The police arrived. They asked me
who the man was to me, and I said he my brother. The man denied that
and so I ran, but the policemen caught me. One of them beat me with
his pistol on my right arm and hand. They forced me into the police
car and took me to the police station in Mamchen where they told me to
take a shower. When I was showering, one of the policemen came in and
asked me if the man had paid me, and I said no. The policeman put 20
lempiras (US$ 1.80) into my hand and grabbed me and said that he was
going to send me to the girl's juvenile detention centre unless I had
sex with him, so I had no choice but to let him abuse me. They
released me about 5am on March 21st". It is estimated that Fany
Cerrato was raped at about 2am on March 21st.
Fany Cerrato reported the abuse to the Casa Alianza street educators
and was taken to the DIC to make a formal declaration on March 22nd at
midday. She also was given a forensic examination.
On the evening of 14th June, the Honduran policeman who detained and
raped Fany Cerrato, was arrested. Juan Carlos Argueta (30), police
car driver of the Fuerzas de Seguridad Pública (Public Security
Forces) which, in Honduras, is a part of the military, was arrested
by order of the First Criminal Judge of Letters (Juzgado de Letras
Primero de lo Criminal) and was jailed for six days pending further
investigation. Fany Cerrato is in a Casa Alianza group home. She will
start going to school next month.
The International Secretariat would like to extend the gratitude of
all those involved for the interventions made by the network and other
individuals and organisations so far. However, OMCT is concerned that
further action in this case is required.
Action requested :
Please write to the Honduran authorities urging them to:
i ensure that should Juan Carlos Argueta be found guilty, that he be
sanctioned with a severity that matches the gravity of the crime
ii take appropriate measures to put an end to the harassment and
systematic threats against the life, security and integrity of all
iii guarantee an impartial, public and exhaustive enquiry into these
facts, identify those responsible, bring them before a civil competent
and impartial tribunal and apply the penal, civil and/or
administrative sanctions provided by law
iv. ensure in all circumstances the respect for human rights and
fundamental freedoms in accordance with national laws and
S.E. Carlos Roberto Reina, Presidente de la RepUblica de Honduras,
Casa Presidencial, Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Fax : + 504 34 49 47 and 34
19 66 and 22 10 30 Telex : 1129 MMRR HO/1429 HO
Lic. Edmundo Orellana Mercado, Fiscal General, Fiscalia General de la
RepUblica, Ministerio Público, 4 Avda, Colonia Palmira, Edificio
Castillo Poujol contiguo del Colegio de Enfermeras, Tegucigalpa,
Honduras. Fax : + 504 39 36 97 and 39 36 98
Lic. Leo Valladares Lanza, Comisionado Nacional para la Proteccion de
los Derechos Humanos, Edificio Las Cumbres, Quinto Piso, Ave.
Cervantes, Apdo. 2986, Tegucigalpa, Honduras. Fax : + 504 38 75 38
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
Geneva, 17 June 1997
Kindly inform us of any action undertaken quoting the code number of
this appeal in your reply.
Fax 4122 733 1051
Ph 4122 733 3140
OMCT is: l'Organisation Mondiale contre la Torture
The World Organisation Against Torture