Today Judge Daniel Herrera Piedrabuena finally ordered the arrest of César Milani for his role in the crimes against humanity, of which Pedro and Ramón Olivera and Verónica Ligia Matta were the victims in La Rioja in 1976-77. The decision for pretrial detention, to the satisfaction of victims and to society, was long overdue. At the same time, it is essential to point out that this did not occur until Milani had left active service and his position as Army Chief of Staff, and after the conclusion of the mandate of the government that appointed him; this does not cast favorable light on the essential image of the separations of powers and integrity of justice.
In 2013, CELS challenged Milani’s promotion to Lieutenant-General. The Olivera family’s allegations and the disappearance of soldier Alberto Ledo in Tucumán were among the reasons for asserting that Milani was not suitable for the position.
All the lawsuits for which Milani is under investigation for crimes against humanity have been notable for delays and postponements, including the one for which he was ordered detained today. It is essential that investigations into crimes of state terror move forward swiftly to guarantee truth and justice to the victims and to society as a whole.