Daniel García Rodríguez and Reyes Alpízar Ortíz have been in prison for more than 17 years in Mexico, without being convicted of a crime, without even going to trial.
According to the human rights organization Pena Sin Culpa (Penalty Without Fault), the imprisonment of Rodríguez and Ortíz is “An emblematic case of the use of preventive detention in Mexico.” Their imprisonment is one of the longest cases of preventative detention in history. “To this day, they have not been sentenced because they can not find evidence against them and the anomalies that appear throughout the case.”
In 2017, the International Commission on Human Rights denounced the measure, considering the detentions an “arbitrary deprivation of liberty,” but both men continue to be held without a sentence, reported Mexican news network Animal Politico.
Both men were accused of killing a councilwoman in Atizapan de Zaragoza in the State of Mexico. Pena Sin Culpa says authorities fabricated the cases against the men, who have said they were tortured and have been in prison now for more than 17 years without a sentence.
Rodríguez and Ortíz’s cases are extreme, but not unique. Almost 40 percent of Mexico’s 204,442 prisoners were held in pretrial detention as of March 2018, according to the World Prison Brief.