All 13 police officers involved in the arrest of Moisés Órdenes in 2019 should be prosecuted, according to his family’s lawyers and representatives of Amnesty International. They expressed grave concerns about the prosecutor’s decision to stop the investigation into many of the officers involved in the case.
Regional Prosecutor Felipe Acuña announced that only six of the 13 police officers involved in the arrest of Moisés Órdenes in 2019 would go to trial for unlawful imprisonment.
Acuña, in a radio-interview with BiobioChile explained, “There is evidence, we believe, to charge and bring to trial six persons; on the other hand, there is no evidence to establish the participation of the other seven persons …. This is the reason for the decision not to prosecute.”
The Órdenes family’s lawyers, however, argue that there is, in fact, evidence of all 13 officers’ involvement in Órdenes’s arrest. Moisés Órdenes, at the time 55 years old, was arrested by police special forces during a protest in Plaza Ñuñoa on Oct. 21, 2019. He was severely beaten, resulting in fractured ribs, loss of teeth, and the loss of sight in his left eye. The complete arrest was captured on live TV.
El Estado de Chile tiene que proteger la protesta y tiene que investigar y sancionar cualquier acto de tortura que se cometa en nuestro país, como los actos de tortura colectiva que se cometieron contra Moisés Órdenes.https://t.co/yfGOx5LeTL
— Amnistía Internacional Chile (@amnistiachile) February 9, 2023
Rodrigo Bustos, the Director of Amnesty International in Chile, goes even farther and says that it was a case of “collective torture” by the police officers. “The State of Chile must protect protest and must investigate and punish any act of torture committed in our country, such as the acts of collective torture committed against Moisés Órdenes,” the organization Tweeted.
In addition to these offenses, the lawyers claim to have proof that the other seven officers attempted to obstruct the investigation through falsification of public documents. Previously, all 13 were charged with adulteration of the police reports about the arrest.
Órdenes’s representatives have requested a meeting with the prosecutor’s office prior to the hearing of the seven police officers, in order to present their evidence and to proceed with the investigation. The prosecutor’s office has stated that it will accept the request. The hearing is scheduled for Feb. 24.
Matthijs is a newly graduated journalism student from Groningen, the Netherlands. As a starting journalist and aspiring foreign correspondent, he decided to extend his 6-month university exchange in Chile to do an internship at Chile Today. He enjoys writing about a broad range of topics, but international relations, politics and conflicts are his key interests.