Trial for crimes committed in the Atlético-Banco-Olimpo detention centers begins tomorrow

This is the third trial for the crimes against humanity committed in the “ABO” circuit of clandestine detention centers, which were used for two years starting in early 1977.

Tomorrow is the first hearing of the third trial for crimes against humanity committed in three clandestine detention centers known as ABO: Atlético, which operated in the supplies division of the Federal Police of Argentina; Banco, located in facilities belonging to the Buenos Aires Provincial Police in La Matanza; and Olimpo, facilities of the maintenance division of the Federal Police of Argentina. These centers were operated from early 1977 until early 1979.

At the first trial held in 2010, 16 people were sentenced for their crimes against 181 victims. Two years later, a second trial known as ABO II or ABO bis ended with the conviction of two defendants.

This third trial seeks to determine the accused parties’ criminal liability for illegal deprivation of liberty and torture of 352 individuals, and the murder of 19 of them, who were part of a “transfer” operation on December 6, 1978.

A group of the individuals accused of these acts belonged to the intelligence sector of the Federal Police of Argentina: Eduardo Angel Cruz, alias “Cramer,” Raimundo Oscar Izzi, Juan Carlos Mario Chacra, alias “Paco,” Carlos Alberto Lorenzatti, alias “Gato” or “Gato Viejo,” Ricardo Valdivia, alias “Valderrama” or “Miralejos,” and Gerardo Jorge Arráez, alias “Nito.” They are joined by Alfredo Omar Feito, a member of Intelligence Battalion 601, Héctor Horacio Marc, alias “Ruso,” who formally belonged to the Federal Prison Service, and Juan Miguel Méndez, alias “Nelson,” second lieutenant of the National Gendarmerie. For the same events, Pedro Santiago Godoy, a federal police officer, alias “Calculín” was also being prosecuted but he died in October 2014 while under house arrest.

CELS is a plaintiff in its capacity as a human rights organization, acting on behalf of all of the victims. CELS is also representing the individuals Carmen Aguiar de Lapacó, for her case and that of her daughter Alejandra Lapacó; María Paula Maroni and María Rosa Graciela Giganti, for their case and that of Juan Patricio Maroni; Virginia Arminda Gallardo de Mateu, Nélida Isabel Pérez de Mateu, Natalia Alba Mateu for Abel Mateu Gallardo; Carlos Pisoni for his parents, Irene Bellochio and Rolando Pisoni; Norberto Berner and Isabel Cerrutti, for their own case; Josefina and Francisco Giglio for Virginia Isabel Cazalás de Giglio; and Agustín Cetrángolo for Víctor Cetrángolo.

The hearings will be held before the Federal Oral Court No. 2 on Tuesdays (at 8:30 am) and Wednesdays (at 9:00 am) in the AMIA court room located at Comodoro Py 2002 in the city of Buenos Aires. Tomorrow, the first hearing of the trial will be held at 10:30am. We hope you can join us.