Mapuche prisoners of Ercilla call for courage and continued reclamation of land

from paismapuche.org

PUBLIC COMMUNIQUE FROM FERNANDO MILLACHEO AND CRISTIAN LEVINAO

To the national and international public, political prisoners of Angol prison Fernando Millacheo and Cristian Levinao declare the following:

We spent over two years in preventative prison and today we are sentenced to 15 and 10 years in the montaje “the Chiguayhue case”, in which we are accused of the supposed robbery with intimidation and aggravated homicide of small landowners in the region.

We as mapuche aware of the struggle that our communities re engaged in, declare that we are against these types of accusations, since the struggle is not against the small landholders but against the latifundistas and the forestry investors who invade and exploit our land.

We believe that these types of montajes are a maneuver of the ruling government to tarnish the just struggle for land, since they seek only to divide and debilitate the movement and the just demands of the mapuche people.

An expression of the above, are the exclusive prosecutors who are set on this type of case because rather than seeking the truth, these are political judgments, since they seek to scare the youth away from struggle.

One of their hounds is the prosecutor Chamorro, who in addition to evidence tampering and undermining his own legality by using anonymous witnesses, has been charged with imprisoning and persecuting those who have the consciousness to fight. It is thus that the judicial system, together with the police, is are no more than an element of repression from the dominant class and that it overall defends forestry companies, imperialist investments and all the latifundistas.

We strongly express that prison does not intimidate us, nor persecution, nor bullets, we are aware of the process that we are undertaking, we are prisoners for the land, it is for this that we call on our communities and especially the youth not to be intimidated by these enemies of the people who have mired our people in exploitation and oppression, their hands are stained with mapuche blood!!

We call on the conscientious people and especially on our communities to carry on with the just land reclamations of our people.

AMULEPE TAIN WEICHAN!!
MARRICHIWEW!!

March, 2014.

Machi Celestino Córdova sentenced to 18 years in prison

from paismapuche.org

This Friday the Oral Criminal Court of Temuco handed down a sentence of 18 years in prison to the machi Celestino Córdova, who was found guilty of the fire in which the latifundista couple Luchsinger-Mackay died, in Vilcún, mapuche territory.

“By a majority of votes, a Celestino Cerafín Córdova Tránsito -ya antes individualizado- is sentenced to a penalty of 18 years imprisonment, and perpetual disqualification from holding public political office, for being deemed the author of a fire resulting in death”, said the 120-page ruling.

The conviction, which was conducted under strict police presence, both inside and outside the courtroom, ended with the rejection of the request of the prosecutors, who had asked for qualified life imprisonment (40 years) and without the right to benefits.

Previously defense attorney Karina Riquelme announced that they will appeal for a mistrial, since the macho Córdova was convicted as a “collaborator”, and not actually the “author”.

While the reading was given in court, hundreds of people demonstrated outside in support of the mapuche authority, which ended in clashes with police.

Last february 20th, the chilean courts believed the prosecutor’s version of the supposed participation of the machi Córdova in the attack that happened the morning of january 4th, 2013 at the Granja Lumahue estate, where Werner Luchsinger and his wife Vivianne Mackay lost their lives.

After the reading, regional prosecutor of the Public Ministry and in this case, Cristian Paredes, commented that the ruling would be reviewed in full for future action, however he felt that at least, the years given to Córdova “are consistent with the gravity of the crime”.

“The penalty imposed is 18 years; 18 without the possibility of alternative benefits, therefore we think it is a sentence that at least partially fits the severity of the harm caused to the victims. We need to review the wording of the judgment. Today only a brief section was read concerning the most aggravated conditions (…) we must review the entire contents to ultimately decide whether we will ask for a mistrial”, said the prosecutor.

Meanwhile, the lawyer Carlos Tenorio, who represented the Luchsinger-Mackay  family at the trial, assured that the case was “very complex, in which proving a fire resulting in death is not easy. Particularly in this region.”

It should be remembered that the judges rejected the government’s classification of the events as “terrorism”.

The lawyer Pablo Ortega, who defended the ancestral mapuche authority of Lof Lleupeko, said that he is “calm. In fact he has told me that for his family, for his people, for his communities, he is prepared and in good spirits. Both he and his defense are hopeful about resources that will come in time, and that we can obtain the declaration of absolution that is what the defense believes in.”