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Dominican Republic: Police accused of torture and killings

last updated Nov 08, 2011

Amnesty International (AI) has accused the police in the Dominican Republic of being responsible for a high number of killings and torture over a five-year period. According to the human rights group authorities continuously fail to investigate allegations of torture. A considerable number of homicides (10.5% in 2010) are carried out by the police each year.

Police spokesman Maximo Baez said that strong measures are necessary for crime prevention but emphasised that the police try to minimize side effects. He added that 156 officers have been charged with crimes since August 2010.

The AI report entitled “Shut up if you don’t want to be killed” is based on almost two years of research and hundreds of interviews with family members of killed persons and witnesses were conducted. The report claims that people have been subjected to torture methods such as deprivation of food and water, plastic bags over the head and hanging from bars in the wall by their handcuffs.

AI (2011) Report: "Shut up if you don't want to be killed"

Washington Post: Amnesty International accuses Dominican Republic police of killings, torture

CNN: Amnesty: Killings by Dominican police 'alarming'

Dominican Republic country profile