Byron Rogerto Cañaveral v. Ecuador, Case 11.439, Report No. 94/00, OEA/Ser.L/V/II.111 Doc. 20 rev. at 509 (2000).
BYRON ROBERTO CAÑAVERAL
October 5, 2000
On November 9, 1994, Byron Roberto Cañaveral, with the legal assistance
of the Comisión Ecuménica de Derechos Humanos del Ecuador (CEDHU) (hereinafter
the Petitioner or CEDHU) (Ecumenical Commission for
Human Rights) submitted a petition to the Inter-American Commission on Human
Rights (hereinafter the Commission, the Inter-American Commission,
or the IACHR) against the Republic of Ecuador (hereinafter the
State, the Ecuadorian State, or Ecuador), in
which he alleged violations of the following rights protected by the American
Convention on Human Rights (hereinafter the American Convention
or the Convention): the
right to humane treatment (Article 5), the right to personal liberty (Article
7), the right to a fair trial (Article 8), and the right the judicial protection
(Article 25), and at the same time the general obligation of the Ecuadorian
State to respect the rights contained in the American Convention, and to guarantee
their free and full exercise (Article 1(1)), to the detriment of Mr. Byron
The parties reached a friendly settlement agreement in this case on
June 11, 1999. This report contains
a brief presentation of the facts and the text of the agreement, in keeping
with Article 49 of the Convention.
On May 26, 1993, Mr. Byron Roberto Cañaveral was detained by members
of the National Police who were carrying out operations during a civic strike
called by the Coordinadora Agraria and several grass-roots social organizations.
After finding a card indicating his membership in the Juventud Revolucionaria
del Ecuador, the police accused him of setting a police car on fire, and
detained and tortured him.
The medical certificate indicated excoriations on the eyelids, conjunctive
irritation, and pain in the shoulders, all due to torture.
PROCESSING BEFORE THE COMMISSION
On November 9, 1994, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights
received a petition submitted by the petitioner against the Ecuadorian State,
which was opened on March 13, 1995.
The case was then processed pursuant to the Commissions Regulations.
On February 9, 1999, the Commission placed itself at the disposal of
the parties in order to initiate the procedure to reach a friendly settlement.
On April 5, 1999, CEDHU, in its capacity as representative of Mr. Cañaveral
Chiluisa, accepted the Commissions proposal, and on June 11, 1999, this
friendly settlement agreement was signed in the city of Quito, in Ecuador,
with the presence of Carlos Ayala Corao, member of the IACHR at the time,
and rapporteur for Ecuador, who traveled to Quito to facilitate the agreement.
THE FRIENDLY SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT
The Friendly Settlement Agreement signed by the parties reads as follows:
Ecuadorian State, through the Office of the Attorney General, with a view
to promoting and protecting human rights and given the great importance of
the full observance of human rights at this time for the international image
of our country, as the foundation of a just, dignified, democratic, and representative
society, has decided to take a new course in the evolution of human rights
Office of the Attorney General has initiated conversations with all persons
who have been victims of human rights violations, aimed at reaching friendly
settlement agreements to provide reparations for the damages caused.
Ecuadorian State, in strict compliance with the obligations it acquired upon
signing the American Convention on Human Rights and other international human
rights law instruments, is aware that any violation of an international obligation
that has caused damages triggers the duty to make adequate reparations--monetary
reparations and criminal punishment of the perpetrators being the most just
and equitable form. Therefore the Office of the Attorney General and Mr. Byron
Roberto Cañaveral Chiluisa, each of their own right, have reached a friendly
settlement, pursuant to the provisions of Articles 48(1)(f) and 49 of the
American Convention on Human Rights and Article 45 of the Regulations of the
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
following persons were present at the signing of this Friendly Settlement
Dr. Ramón Jiménez Carbo, Attorney General of the State, as indicated
in his appointment and certificate of office, which are attached as qualifying
Mr. Byron Roberto Cañaveral Chiluisa, citizenship document number 171021838-7;
a copy of that document is also attached as a qualifying document.
STATE RESPONSIBILITY AND ACCEPTANCE
Ecuadorian State acknowledges its international responsibility for having
violated the human rights of Mr. Byron Roberto Cañaveral Chiluisa, enshrined
in Article 5 (right to humane treatment), Article 7 (personal liberty), Article
8 (a fair trial), Article 25 (judicial protection), and the general obligation
set forth in Article 1(1) of the American Convention on Human Rights and other
international instruments, since the violations were committed by State agents,
which could not be disproved by the State, giving rise to State responsibility.
the above, the Ecuadorian State accepts the facts in case No. 11.439 before
the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and undertakes the necessary
reparative steps to compensate the victims, or their successors, for the damages
caused by those violations.
view of the foregoing, the Ecuadorian State, through the Attorney General,
as the sole judicial representative of the Ecuadorian State, pursuant to Article
215 of the Constitution of Ecuador, enacted in Official Register No. 1 and
in force since August 11, 1998, is awarding Byron Roberto Cañaveral Chiluisa
a one-time compensatory payment in the amount of seven thousand US dollars
(US$ 7,000) or the equivalent in local currency, calculated at the exchange
rate in effect at the time the payment is made, to be paid from the National
compensation covers the consequential damages, loss of income, and moral damages
suffered by Mr. Byron Roberto Cañaveral Chiluisa and his family members, as
well as any other claims of the family members of Mr. Byron Roberto Cañaveral
Chiluisa regarding the subject of this agreement, under domestic and international
law, and is chargeable to the National Budget. To this end, the Office of
the Attorney General will notify the Ministry of Finance, for it to carry
out this obligation within 90 days of the signing of this document.
PUNISHMENT OF THE PERSONS RESPONSIBLE
Ecuadorian State pledges to bring civil and criminal proceedings and pursue
administrative sanctions against those persons who are alleged to have participated
in the violation in the performance of State functions or under the color
of public authority.
Office of the Attorney General pledges to encourage the State Attorney General,
the competent judicial organs, and public agencies or private institutions
to contribute legal evidence to determine the liability of those persons.
If admissible, the prosecution will be subject to the constitution and laws
of the Ecuadorian State.
RIGHT TO SEEK INDEMNITY
Ecuadorian State reserves the right to seek indemnity, pursuant to Article
22 of the Constitution of the Republic of Ecuador, from those persons found
responsible for human rights violations through a final and firm judgment
handed down by the countrys courts or when administrative liability
is found, in keeping with Article 8 of the American Convention on Human Rights.
TAX EXEMPTION AND DELAY IN COMPLIANCE
payment made by the Ecuadorian State to the other party to this agreement
is not subject to any current or future taxes, except for the 1% tax on capital
the event that the State is delinquent for over three months from the date
the agreement is signed, it must pay interest on the amount owed, corresponding
to the current bank rate of the three largest banks in Ecuador for the duration
of its delinquency.
Ecuadorian State, through the Office of the Attorney General, agrees to report
every three months to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on compliance
with the obligations assumed by the State in this friendly settlement agreement.
keeping with its consistent practice and obligations under the American Convention,
the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights will oversee compliance with
compensatory damages that the Ecuadorian State is awarding to Mr. Byron Roberto
Cañaveral are provided for in Articles 22 and 24 of the Constitution of the
Republic of Ecuador, for violation of the Constitution, other national laws,
and the norms in the American Convention on Human Rights and other international
human rights instruments.
friendly settlement is entered into based on respect for the human rights
enshrined in the American Convention on Human Rights and other international
human rights instruments and on the policy of the Government of Ecuador to
respect and protect human rights.
NOTIFICATION AND CONFIRMATION
Byron Roberto Cañaveral Chiluisa specifically authorizes the Attorney General
to notify the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of this Friendly Settlement
Agreement, so that the Commission may confirm and ratify it in its entirety.
parties to this agreement freely and voluntarily express their conformity
with and their acceptance of the content of the preceding clauses and state
for the record that they hereby end the dispute before the Inter-American
Commission on Human Rights on the international responsibility of the State
for violating the rights of Mr. Byron Roberto Cañaveral Chiluisa.
DETERMINATION OF COMPATIBILITY AND COMPLIANCE
The Commission determined that the agreement is compatible with the
provisions of Article 48(1)(f) of the American Convention.
On August 29, 2000, CEDHU informed the Commission that on August 11
of this year, the State, 14 months after the signing of the agreement, proceeded
to make payment of the compensation agreed upon.
Nonetheless, the State has yet to pay the interest accruing from the
14-month delinquency in payment of the compensation provided for in the friendly
According to the petitioner, the State has not carried out its main
commitment, which is to punish the persons responsible for the violations
that were the subject of the complaint before the Commission.
The Commission reiterates its recognition of the Ecuadorian State for
its decision to settle this case through reparative measures, including those
necessary for bringing civil, criminal, and administrative proceedings against
those who participated in the violations alleged in the performance of government
The IACHR will continue to monitor compliance with the continuing commitments
assumed by Ecuador to bring civil, criminal, and administrative proceedings
against the persons who, in the performance of government functions, participated
in the violations alleged, and the payment of interest for delinquency in
The IACHR ratifies that the friendly settlement procedure in the American
Convention make it possible to conclude individual cases in a non-contentious
manner, and has proven, in cases from various countries, to offer an important
vehicle for settling alleged violations that may be used by both parties (petitioners
and the State).
INTER-AMERICAN COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS,
To recognize that the State has made payment of US$ 7,000.00 as compensation,
and that it has failed to carry out its commitment to punish the persons responsible
for the violation alleged, or to pay interest for the delinquency in payment
of the compensation.
To urge the State to take the measures needed to carry out the pending
commitment to bring civil, criminal, and administrative proceedings against
those persons who, in the performance of state functions, participated in
the alleged violations, and to pay interest for the delinquency in payment
of the compensation.
To continue to monitor and supervise implementation of the friendly
settlement agreement, and in this context to remind the Ecuadorian State,
through the Office of the Attorney General, of its commitment to report to
the IACHR every three months on progress in carrying out the obligations assumed
by the State under this friendly settlement.
To make this report public and to include in its Annual Report to the
OAS General Assembly.
Done and signed
at the headquarters of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, in the
city of Washington, D.C., October 5, 2000. (Signed)
Hélio Bicudo, Chairman; Claudio Grossman, First Vice-Chairman; Juan
Méndez, Second Vice-Chairman; Commissioners:
Marta Altolaguirre, Robert K. Goldman, and Peter Laurie.
Dr. Julio Prado Vallejo, an Ecuadorian national, did not participate in
the discussion of the case, pursuant to Article 19 of the Commissions