Press Release

IACHR Condemns Murder of Two Trans Women in Brazil

July 6, 2012

Washington, D.C. – The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) condemns the murder of two trans women during the last week of June 2012 ini Brazil: an unidentified person in Pinhais, Curitiba, State of Parana, and Camila de Mink in Baurú, State of São Paulo.

On June 26, 2012, a burnt body was found on the banks of the River Irai, in a remote area of Pinhais. According to the information available, the body was later identified as that of a male, having his nails polished and with other characteristics culturally attributed to females. The authorities have indicated that the identity of the murdered trans person has not been established.

Accoring to the information received, a few days later, on June 30, 2012, the stabbed body of Camila de Mink (registered at birth as Carlúcio de Oliveira), a 40-year-old trans person, was found in an area of street prostitution in Bauru. This is allegedly the third case of serious violence against travestites that took place in Bauru this year.

The IACHR reminds the State of its obligation to investigate such acts on its own initiative and to punish those responsible. The Inter-American Commission urges the State to conduct an investigation that takes into account whether this murder was committed because of the gender expression, gender identity or sexual orientation of the victim.

The Commission continues to receive information on killings, torture, arbitrary arrests, and other forms of violence and exclusion against lesbians, gays, and trans, bisexual, and intersex persons. In addition, the Commission notes that very frequently, problems exist in the investigation of those crimes, which involve, in part, failures to open lines of investigation into whether the crime was committed by reason of the victim's gender expression, gender identity or sexual orientation. The ineffectiveness of the state response fosters high rates of impunity, which in turn lead to the chronic repetition of such crimes, leaving the victims and their families defenseless.

The IACHR urges the State to take action to prevent and respond to these human rights abuses and to ensure that LGTBI people can effectively enjoy their right to a life free from discrimination and violence, including the adoption of policies and public campaigns and the amendments necessary to bring laws into line with the inter-American instruments on human rights.

A principal, autonomous body of the Organization of American States (OAS), the IACHR derives its mandate from the OAS Charter and the American Convention on Human Rights. The Inter-American Commission has a mandate to promote respect for human rights in the region and acts as a consultative body to the OAS in this area. The Commission is composed of seven independent members who are elected in an individual capacity by the OAS General Assembly and who do not represent their countries of origin or residence.

No. 79/12