El Salvador justice system, one-sided and corrupt. If you are wealthy or know the right people, you most likely can get away with almost anything. As some people say, there are two justice systems in El Salvador, one for the wealthy and one for the poor.
The vast majority of Salvadorans are feeling that way after what happened with the following case.
In summary, the case involves a judge and a ten-year-old girl, Judge Jaime Escalante was accused of minor and incapacitated sexual assault for touching a ten-year-old girl.
El Salvador justice system. Why people are upset.
Undoubtedly, most people’s anger derives from the fact that this case was not allowed to get to trial.
This case is different as it involves a judge, an appointed public official. So, before the matter could go to trial, a panel of judges must first decide if the case has the merits to be a crime. This chamber is the one who decides if the case can go to the trial phase or not.
So, during the proceedings, Judge Jaime Escalante’s lawyer argued that under Salvadoran law, this was not a crime but instead a civil case punished by a monetary fine.
The sickening part is that the lawyer never claimed that it didn’t happen or that the judge was innocent; his whole argument was that this was a civil matter. And guess what, the chamber agreed with the lawyer.
“The touching does not put at risk the intimacy or sexual freedom of the person,” said the defendant’s lawyer.
So, according to these judges, touching a ten-year-old girl in her private parts in public is not a crime but a civil case. Also, the judges said that the act took place in a public setting, around other people, it was daylight, and the girl saw the judge coming towards her. To me, it doesn’t make sence!
We need to change some laws or some judges in El Salvador.
Tocar a niña no es delito sino una falta, argumenta cámara judicial en El Salvador, durante proceso contra magistrado acusado de agresión sexual https://t.co/Uz6PIlJq4T
— La Prensa Gráfica (@prensagrafica) October 31, 2019
President Nayib Bukele expressed his opinion on Twiter as well.
President Bukele expressed his opinion saying that this was a mockery to the El Salvador justice system. Bukele said that every person is presumed innocent until otherwise proven guilty; but, this was not the case here.
Esta es una burla a nuestro Estado de Derecho.
Toda persona es inocente hasta que se demuestre lo contrario, pero aquí ni siquiera se pudo probar su culpabilidad o inocencia, sino que se afirma que no existe delito posible.
¿Tocar los genitales de una niña no sería delito? https://t.co/8RPB89R7GO
— Nayib Bukele (@nayibbukele) October 31, 2019
El Salvador justice system. My Opinion.
I don’t know if this judge is innocent or guilty, all of that should have been sorted out at trial.
However, I agree with those who are upset about the whole situation; as of right now, this case is not over yet. The Salvadoran attorney general is appealing the chamber’s decision that this was not a crime, but a civil case.