Tag Archives: Court Decision

Chile’s Supreme Court Overturns Case Seeking to Protect Mapuche Children from Police

On Friday, May 25th, the Chilean Supreme Court announced their decision in a case involving the Mapuche community of José Jineo. The case sought to protect Mapuche women and children from police abuse, and was in response to a number of police raids that occurred in that community during the month of January. Ultimately, the Supreme Court stated there was insufficient evidence to suggest that Chilean police officers had inappropriately used their powers in the Mapuche community. Continue reading

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Diaguita Community Wins at Supreme Court, Halts “El Morro” Mining Project

On Friday, April 27th, Chile’s Supreme Court issued another decision in favor of indigenous peoples. This adds to the list of recent decisions that are slowly advancing in Chile the indigenous right to consultation. This latest decision involved the Comunidad Agrícola los Huasco Altinos and the “El Morro” mining project, owned by Sociedad Contractual Minera El Morro. The decision will halt the large mining project until consultation with the community can take place. The case is the subject of our latest column for I Love Chile News, which you can read here.

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Court Orders Exploratory Drilling Halted Until Consultation with Aymara Community Occurs

On Friday, March 30th, the Chilean Supreme Court decided their second case in a month where they ordered consultation with Indigenous peoples. The case came out of northern Chile where Aymara communities sought to stop prospective drilling occurring on their territories. Ultimately, the Court ordered the company Compañía Paguanta S.A. to halt its actions until an environmental impact study is performed and the Aymara people are consulted as is required by ILO Convention 169. Continue reading

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Chile’s Supreme Court Halts Wind Farm Project and Orders Consultation with Mapuche People

On Friday, March 23rd, the Chilean Supreme Court handed down a decision in favor of a Huilliche-Mapuche community who were trying to stop Ecopower — a Chilean-Sweedish company — from building 56 wind turbines on the island of Chiloé. The Huilliche community claimed, among other things, that they were never effectively consulted about the project and that the project would negatively affect Mapuche ceremonial sites and burial grounds. The Supreme Court agreed that consultation had not occurred and ordered that the project be halted until consultation has been completed. Continue reading

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Court of Appeals Suspends Construction of Power Lines through Mapuche Ancestral Lands

On Wednesday, January 25th, the Temuco Court of Appeals found in favor of several Mapuche communities who sought to stop construction of power transmission lines through their ancestral lands. The Mapuche communities argued that they were not consulted about the project as is required by International Labor Organization Convention No. 169 (ILO 169), which has been ratified by Chile and is a part of Chilean law. The decision — a victory for indigenous rights — may still be appealed to the Chilean Supreme Court. Continue reading

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Supreme Court Issues Another Decision Addressing Police Violence in Mapuche Communities

On January 5, 2012, the Chilean Supreme Court upheld a ruling in favor of a Mapuche youth from Temucuicui that originated in the Court of Appeals in Temuco.  The case arose following an altercation between police forces and Mapuche community members in Temucuicui on December 8th, during which the police detained Felipe Marillán Morales, a 12-year-old minor.  It is the second case in recent weeks to address the legality of police operations in the Araucanía region. Continue reading

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Chilean Court Prohibits Use of Tear Gas Against Mapuche Communities

On Wednesday, December 21st, the Temuco Court of Appeals decided a case in which they ordered the Chilean police force to refrain from using tear gas in the homes of Mapuche communities near Ercilla. The court’s order also stated that tear gas should not be used when women, children or elderly people are present. The case was brought by the Mapuche community of Wente Winkul Mapu, after their homes were raided by officers firing tear gas in November of this year. The court’s decision cited several international law instruments, including ILO Convention 169. Continue reading

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Chilean Court Cases Addressing Convention 169: December Update

Since Chile ratified ILO Convention 169 in 2008, a number of court cases have been brought in domestic courts alleging violations of various provisions of the Convention. In the interest of making these cases more widely known, we will be regularly posting a list of the cases, along with their citations. Continue reading

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Police Officer Sentenced to Five Years for Killing of Mapuche Individual

More than two years after Chilean police officer Patricio Jara Muñoz shot and killed a 24-year-old Mapuche man named Jaime Mendoza Collío, the Military Court of Valdivia issued a sentence of five years and one day for Jara. This is a reduction in the fifteen year sentence that Jara was originally given — a sentence that was originally recommended by the Military Prosecutor in the case. At the time of this writing, no explanation for the reduction in penalty has been made public. Continue reading

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Court Acquits Two Mapuche of Charges Under Antiterrorism Law

On Friday, September 30th, a Temuco Court acquit two Mapuche men – Luis Tralcal and Mauricio Huaiquilao — of a number of crimes, including charges made under Chile’s Antiterrorism Law. The case stemmed from a variety of incidents that occurred between 2005 and 2009, and the trial began on September 5th of this year. After 18 days of trial, the case concluded today and the judges gave their verdict. Despite the victory for the Mapuche defendants, there was some talk about the judgement being challenged by the prosecutor. Continue reading

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