Ayotzinapa: Carlos Gómez Arrieta turned himself in, faces torture accusations

Carlos Gómez Arrieta allegedly tortured suspects involved in the Ayotzinapa case

Ayotzinapa: Carlos Gómez Arrieta turned himself in, faces torture accusations
Carlos Gómez Arrieta surrendered himself on September 11 - Photo: /
English 13/09/2020 10:59 MAnuel Espino Mexico City Actualizada 11:05

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Authorities announced Carlos Gómez Arrieta, a former high-ranking federal police official accused of torturing suspects during an investigation into the enforced disappearance of the 43 Ayotzinapa students, turned himself in on September 11. 

Authorities had issued an arrest warrant against Gómez Arrieta for allegedly torturing Carlos Canto Salgo, who was arrested in connection with the Ayotzinapa case in 2014. Before turning himself in, Arrieta was working as Michoacán’s Public Security Minister. 
 
A video showing officials torturing a suspect went viral on social media months ago. 

Authorities informed the parents of the 43 missing students on September 11, during a meeting with President Andrés Manuel López Obrador.
 
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Human Rights Minister Alejandro Encinas informed the victims’ families and President López Obrador that Carlos Gómez Arrieta turned himself in to the Attorney General’s Office (FGR) earlier that day. 

 

Every month, the parents of the 43 Ayotzinapa students meet with the President and federal authorities to discuss the most recent developments in the case. Interior Minister Olga Sánchez Cordero and Security Minister Alfonso Durazo Montaño were also in attendance. 
 
However, authorities have not extradited Tomás Zerón, who is hiding in Canada. Zerón allegedly ordered the torture of the suspects during the 2014 investigation. 

Authorities confirm Tomás Zerón fled Mexico

Nearly six years after 43 students disappeared in Iguala, Guerrero, Attorney General Alejandro Gertz Manero confirmed Tomás Zerón, the case’s chief investigator, fled the country months ago. In July 2020, Gertz Manero said prosecutors had requested 46 arrest warrants for municipal officials in the state in connection to the enforced disappearance case.
 
In a video posted to social media, Gertz Manero said that there was an international search underway for Tomás Zerón, the former head of the Criminal Investigation Agency. An arrest warrant was obtained for Zerón in March, but he fled the country, Gertz Manero said. 
 
Zerón was accused of torturing suspects involved in the enforced disappearance of the 43 Mexican students and of manipulating evidence in September 2019.
 
In March 2020, EL UNIVERSAL reported Tomás Zerón fled Mexico in late 2019 and that he is allegedly living in Canada. 
 
Many of these officials were previously arrested and released after the cases against them fell apart. Gertz Manero said the new charges were never investigated or brought by prosecutors at the time.
 
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The original investigation concluded in what the Jesús Murillo Karam, then-Attorney General, called the “historic truth” that the 43 students from the teaching college at Ayotzinapa were abducted by police in Iguala in September 2014 and handed over to drug cartel Guerreros Unidos, which killed them and burned their bodies. However, independent experts found numerous flaws in the investigation.
 
Since the Attorney General’s Office started the investigation under Gertz Manero, additional remains have been recovered and sent to the University of Innsbruck in Austria for identification.
 
In an interview with journalist Salvador García Soto on June 30, Attorney General Alejandro Gertz Manero said he knows where Tomás Zerón is.
 
Gertz Manero said the former investigator knew he would be held accountable for how he handled the Ayotzinapa case and fled the country.
 
Documents indicate the case's chief investigator witnessed and allowed suspects to be tortured to build the case.
 
Tomás Zerón has been charged with torture, enforced disappearance, and offenses against the administration of justice.

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