Mr. Efrain Bámaca Velásquez was a commander of the Revolutionary Organization of the People in Arms (ORPA), one of the guerilla groups that comprised the Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity. On March 12, 1992, there was an armed encounter between ORPA and the Guatemalan Army and Mr. Bámaca Velasquez was captured and tortured. Mr. Bámaca Velasquez was last seen on about July 1992 tied to a metal bed, his whereabouts have since been unknown. The State failed to undertake an effective investigation and to redress the crimes committed against him. The Court found that the State violated the American Convention on Human Rights and the American Convention to Prevent and Punish Torture. The case is notable because It is notable because the Court found a violation of Article 1 (Obligation to Respect Rights) of the American Convention in relation to Article 3 Common to the Geneva Conventions, as the victim was a member of a guerrilla group and had been captured during combat.
Case Summary: Bámaca Velásquez v. Guatemala, Case Summary