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Mexico’s “guilty until proven innocent” justice system is failing the nation

November 9, 2014
Mexico's most successful documentary ever, Presunto Culpable laid bare the deep flaws in the national justice system.

Mexico’s most successful documentary, Presunto Culpable laid bare the deep flaws in the justice system.

Following their arrest in a grimy, working-class borough of Mexico City early Tuesday morning, the fugitive former mayor of Iguala, José Luis Abarca, and his wife, María de los Ángeles Pineda Villa, will now face justice.

They stand accused of ordering the abduction of the 43 students who disappeared outside the town of Iguala in the southern state of Guerrero on September 26.

The negative publicity caused by the case and the immense pressure on the government to solve the crime mean the suspects are likely to be tried sooner than many defendants are in Mexico, where the judicial process can be painfully slow.

But when they do stand trial, there will be no jury to decide whether or not they are guilty, and the judge will hear no verbal testimony from prosecutors, witnesses or the accused.

Instead, as is the norm in Mexico, the judicial process will consist almost entirely of written evidence submitted to a judge who will then singlehandedly determine the outcome of the trial…

Click here to read this feature in full over at Latin Correspondent.

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