In Landmark Decision, Justice System Recognizes Death by Torture

Posted by Allison Fisher

This week, a court in São Paulo officially recognized that the 1976 death of João Batista Franco Drummond was caused by torture and occurred in the DOI-CODI (a police-military intelligence center). Judge Guilherme Madeira Dezem ordered that the cause and location of Drummond’s death be rectified on his death certificate. This is the first time that a judge has ever formally recognized the Inter-American Court of Human Rights ruling that Brazil can no longer pardon crimes that occurred during the dictatorship under the premise of the Amnesty Law of 1979. Drummond’s death, which occurred in the DOI-CODI (a police-military intelligence center) was previously categorized as “head trauma,” but will now be recognized as a consequence of torture.

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