- Egypt rights center raided, 2 Mubaraks acquitted
- New Mexico Supreme Court rules same-sex marriage constitutional
- Blame Bush: 5 years later, that’s still the mantra, pollsters find
- Dutch prostitutes demand same retirement benefits as soccer stars
- John McCain to Harry Reid: I’ll ‘kick the crap’ out of you
- Dogs that talk: Researchers seek $10K for ‘No More Woof’ technology
- 1,000 firefighters called to battle stubborn Big Sur wildfire
- Black Friday brouhaha: Millions of Target shoppers hit by credit card theft
- Britain orders airplane to rescue citizens from violent South Sudan
- Mega Millions winner emerges as Georgia mom, in ‘disbelief’
Film lays bare Mexico’s broken justice system
Question of the Day
Hernandez and Negrete, husband-and-wife doctoral students at the University of California, Berkeley, have campaigned for judicial reform in Mexico for years. They conducted a survey of Mexico City prisoners in 2008 and found that 95 percent of those charged were convicted. They also found that 92 percent of the cases lacked physical evidence and were based on witnesses testimony.
Yet even efforts to repair the system have met with frustration.
Mexicans have been horrified by the case of Marisela Escobedo Ortiz, who was gunned down in a Ciudad Juarez street in December while protesting the acquittal of a man accused of killing her daughter. Her daughter’s alleged killer is the suspect in Escobedo’s murder as well.
The judges acquitted the daughter’s killer in a public hearing, the result of a 2008 legal reform meant to open the system. The judges said the new rules forced them to throw out evidence that might have been accepted under the old, closed system.
Hernandez and Negrete had trouble finding a Mexican distributor for their film, even with the buzz it created at film festivals and in the U.S., where it aired on public television’s “P.O.V.” documentary series last year.
So they turned to Alejandro Ramirez, CEO of Mexico’s largest movie theater chain, Cinepolis, who had seen the documentary in Morelia. Even though his company doesn’t usually distribute films, he decided to do it for the “Presumed Guilty,” which will open in 130 theaters in six major cities.
“The film will help people open their eyes and realize that their freedom is as fragile as someone pointing a finger at them on the street,” Hernandez said.
Associated Press writer Carlos Rodriguez in Mexico City contributed to this report.
“I would love for people to see it and do something to change this system,” Zuniga said, “because being afraid of those who are supposed to make you feel safe is truly horrifying.”
By Michael P. Orsi
Edward Snowden should declare his patriotism in court
- Citing 'unfair system,' Obama commutes sentences for 8 crack offenders
- Gov't wasted $30 billion on 'pillownauts,' crystal goblets -- buying human urine!
- Homeland Security helps smuggle illegal immigrant children into the U.S.
- Bill Gates: The Secret Santa disguised as a 'friendly fellow' on Reddit
- Obamacare 'pajamas boy' gets roundly mocked
- Duck Dynasty Phil Robertson suspended indefinitely for gay quip
- Outrage over Phil Robertson suspension, 'malignant' political correctness
- Sebelius adds another Obamacare exemption
- Armed response, not restrictive gun laws, brought swift end to school shooting
- BOLTON: Nero in the White House
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
All of the world’s problems, solved on your back porch
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.
Extraordinary day at Redskins Park
White House pets gone wild!
Let it snow