Urgent Action

Amnesty Inernational

March 10th 2010

Oaxacan political activist Juan Manuel Martínez and his lawyer, Alba Cruz, have been threatened. Juan Manuel Martínez, who was recently released from prison, is in danger of being arrested and charged a second time with the same crime on the basis of the same evidence.

Juan Manuel Martínez was detained in 2008 for the murder of US journalist Brad Will, but was released in February 2010 after a federal court ruled that the charges against him were baseless. While in prison he was threatened and intimidated by men who came to visit him. At the beginning of December 2009, one of these men told him, "Tell your lawyer to keep quiet, she's overdone it, she should stop making so much noise – we know where you, she, and your relatives live." (dile a tu abogada que se quede quieta, que ya se paso, que deje de hacer tanto ruido –sabemos donde viven y sus familiares). That month, men were seen taking pictures of Juan Manuel Martínez's children at school. Also in December, the family dog was shot dead in the night.

His lawyer, Alba Cruz has also been attacked and threatened repeatedly. Since September 2009, her car has been tampered with three times, once by unscrewing her wheels, once by slashing the tyres; once another car crashed into it while it was parked. Twice another car crashed into hers while she was in it, but the drivers drove off. In August, she received a text message saying, "you are on the list, bitch, you're next." (estas en la lista, perra y tu eres la siguiente).On 26 January 2010, she saw two men standing outside her office. Shortly afterwards she received a text message saying, "We’ve told you and that idiot… we are watching you, you are trash, stop it with your revolution or you’ll be sorry." (ya te hablamos y le dijimos a ese pendejo … los controlemos ustedes son vasura ya paren con su rebolucion o lamentaran[sic]). Alba Cruz filed a complaint about the threats and other security incidents, but has received no effective protection measures. The Inter-American Commission of Human Rights has called on the Mexican authorities to provide her with protection measures, but these have not been implemented.

UA: 52/10 Index: AMR 41/018/2010 Mexico Date: 10 March 2010

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