(Tlapa de Comonfort, Guerrero – Washington D.C., 12 de enero de 2017) The Centro de Derechos de la Montaña (Tlachinollan), the Centro de Derechos Humanos José María Morelos y Pavión (Centro Morelos) and Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights filed a petition before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on January 2nd, 2017 against the Mexican state for the extrajudicial execution in June 2009 of Bonfilio Rubio Villegas, a Naua native from Tlatzala, city of Tlapa de Comonfort, in the state of Guerrero. To this date, no one has been held accountable for this extrajudicial execution.

The state of Guerrero continues to suffer from high rates of violence and the militarization of law enforcement, especially in the context of the so-called “guerra contra el narcotráfico” (war against drug trafficking). For years violations committed by the armed forces, and particularly in cases of extrajudicial executions, have remained in impunity. Several cases on the grave violations of human rights committed by members of the Mexican armed forces have previously reached the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, which held the Mexican state responsible for failing to guarantee due process in the investigation and prosecution of cases of violations to civilians’ humans rights by members of the armed forces by assigning those cases to the military jurisdiction

Bonfilio Rubio Villegas was executed by members of the armed forces in June 2009 at a checkpoint when they shot at the bus in which he was travelling to Mexico city. With few other recourses available, his family undertook a relentless fight to obtain justice and ensure that the case would be heard by a civilian court and not a military court. Despite their lengthy battle, justice was denied to his family due to the fact that the authorities never required that an independent investigation, in accordance with due process, be conducted to ascertain what really happened.

This petition, in representation of Bonfilio Rubio Villegas and his family, denounces the violations committed by the Mexican State, including its failure to guarantee the right to life of Bonfilio Rubio Villegas, and his family’s right to humane treatment, right to a fair trial, and right to judicial protection under the Inter-American Convention on Human Rights.

This petition further shows that far from remedying the violence and insecurity in Guerrero, the militarization of Guerrero  has contributed to even greater impunity for grave violations of human rights, which violations illustrate the danger of granting even greater legitimacy to the action of the armed forces for law enforcement purposes, as would a recent legislative initiative.

The petitioning organizations and the families of Bonfilio Rubio Villegas hope that this petition will contribute to obtaining an independent and impartial investigation of the events surrounding his extrajudicial execution and will lead the Mexican State to guarantee due process at all stages of judicial procedures involving the violation of civilians’ human rights by the Mexican armed forces.

Following the link to watch the press conference about this case.