Crimes against humanity: Former police officers convicted of forcing Silvia Suppo to abort

Sentenced to prison terms between eight years and life, the former police officers were convicted for the crimes they committed against six activists in the city of Rafaela, province of Santa Fe. Silva Suppo, a survivor of state terrorism, was killed in 2010.

Federal judges Luciano Luría, José María Escobar Cello and María Ivón Vella convicted four former police officers for crimes against humanity in the Rafaela case. They were accused of kidnapping Jorge Destéfani, Hugo Suppo, Ricardo Díaz and Graciela Rabellino, who survived; forcibly disappearing Reinaldo Alberto Hattemer; murdering Rubén Luis Carignano; and kidnapping, torturing, raping and forcing an abortion on Silvia Suppo.

Ricardo Ferreyra, a retired police commissioner, was given a combined sentence of 22 years for kidnapping, torture, death and aggravated and repeated rape. Retired police major Juan Calixto Perizzotti was convicted of kidnapping, torture and command responsibility for the crime of abortion, was given a combined sentence of life in prison. María Eva Aebi, former first sergeant, was given a combined sentence of 25 years for the crimes of kidnapping and torture, and as a direct participant in the crime of abortion. Finally, Oscar Farina, retired police inspector, received an 8-year sentence for kidnapping and direct participation in the crime of abortion.

This is not the first time convictions for forced abortion have been handed down as crimes against humanity. In April 2016 in La Rioja province, José Félix Bernaus was sentenced to 16 years in prison for intentional abortion without consent, among other crimes. The Menéndez case ended in 13 convictions, including that of Luciano Benjamín Menéndez.

Silvia Suppo was abducted on May 24, 1977 at age 17, just hours after her brother, and four months after her boyfriend, Reynaldo Hattemer. First taken to the Santa Fe Police Section 4, she was then moved to “La Casita” clandestine detention center, where she was raped multiple times as a brutal form of discipline used on women during the dictatorship. Transferred to the Reinforced Infantry Guard, she was discovered to be pregnant and forced to undergo an abortion. Her jailer was María Eva Aebi. On March 29, 2010, Silvia Suppo was brutally murdered just five months after testifying in court.