Ivan Simonovis to the European Pairlament

My name is Iván Simonovis, 49-year-old and of profession Criminal Investigator. For 23 years uninterrupted I worked in the Police of Criminal investigation of Venezuela and, due to my skills, in the year 2000 I was appointed to take over the Secretary of Public Safety, of the Capital, during the fateful acts of April 11, 2002. My function was the coordination and supervision of the policies of public security of the city of Caracas, Venezuela.

I’m imprisoned in the “General Affairs Department of the Intelligence Services and Prevention of the Interior Ministry and Justice” (DISIP by its initials in Spanish), in Caracas, Venezuela, since November 22, 2004, condemned to 30 years of prison, this actually means death sentence, after 3 years of hearings (the longest judicial litigation of his kind in Venezuelan history), besides 4 years and 6 months of imprisonment without charges, I was sentenced of “complicity” in relation to the death of 2 of the 19 dead in Caracas April 11, 2002.

I am indeed a 4 square meters cell, in the basement of the headquarters of the political police in Caracas, without ventilation or natural light. I only have access to sunlight, 2 hours every 2 weeks. In total 48 hours, [2] days per year of natural light. The place where I am detained is not a jail, is the headquarters of the political police of Venezuela, and these facilities are not designed to have inmates for long periods. Consequently, and given these conditions, my health physical and mental has been deteriorating, and I have had the need for medical attention, in some cases even surgery. There is also a severe restriction of my right to receive visits from family, friends, representatives of NGOs and national or international journalists, violating in fact several articles of the American Convention on Human Rights signed in San José, Costa Rica.

I received a trial with no sense and completely unsubstantiated for the murdered of only 2 of 19 people that unfortunately died in April 11, which developed (the trial) over 225 audiences. This trial was filed in a court located 100 kilometers from Caracas, which is the place where I have been kept, therefore involved traveling over 39,000 kilometers handcuffed.

During the trial, there were hearings from 198 witnesses and 48 experts, there were evaluated more than 250 technical and scientific expertises, and it was analyzed more than 5,700 photographs and videos. None of this evidence proves my guilt as to the facts that I was charged.

In that same period, 67 people were identified, all followers to the President Hugo Chávez, shooting with long and short fire arms against unarmed opposition demonstrators. All these people were acquitted or pardoned by the President of the Republic by an amnesty law issued by the National Assembly after his (the president) request, in December 2007.

On April 3, 2009, I was sentenced to 30 years in prison without any mitigating; on the charge of “complicity correspectiva” without perpetrators, repeat a sentence of death.

This abominable ruling is not even comparable to the recent sentence handed down to former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori. He was sentenced to 25 years in prison for his intellectual authority, as President, in murder with premeditation, aggravated kidnapping and serious injuries to people during the years 1991 and 1992 in Peru.

Gentlemen, my house has been attacked with Molotov bombs, my family, including my minor children, has been threatened in their physical integrity in public by armed radical groups, affects the national government. My wife, who also acts as my lawyer and like my children, has Spanish citizenship, had been subjected to public scorn, has been threatened in television and radio officers and has been attacked in their person and honor of women in a systematic manner by groups of people followers to the government, whom were mobilized to the outside of the seat of the court for uttering insults and threats during her entries and exits to the hearings.

We’ve all gone to the courts and exhausted all the resources that Venezuelan law provides, with the only hope of being treat with fairness and get some respect for our human rights, which have been unsuccessful.

This letter possibly cause negative consequences to my family and I, but before my growing state of defenselessness and before the systematic violation of my human rights, I respectfully contact you to request that, in attainment of the resolution recently approved by the above-mentioned European Parliament to the situation of political
persecutions in Venezuela, the European Parliament exhausts all the possible mechanisms so that a commission of that Parliament visit our country and for them to be able to verify how the justice is used for political persecution.

The case that I have mentioned is not a unique one. In Venezuela exists more than 40 political prisoners; victims of the punishment for political dissidence.

I will always be thankful of any aid that the Parliament could do in order to help with the protection of the human rights and to avoid that cases like mine continue occurring in Venezuela. My wife, also my lawyer, is at your absolute disposition to keep this conversation in person with who ever are indicated by the Parliament. She is also available to better explain the thousands of details, humiliations and aggressions that this note does not include. Also, to carry all the documents that supports each one of my words. She could also work helping to get any information necessary in order to obtain the aid of the European Parliament that I’m desperately requesting in.

Sincerely
Iván Simonovis
Political Prisoner

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