A court in Venezuela on Thursday sentenced a police officer to 25 years in prison over the murder of a youth during a demonstration against President Nicolas Maduro in 2017.
Around 100 people died during mass protests against Maduro’s government in 2017.
The court in the northeastern Anzoategui state convicted former officer Onan Josue Pereira Irigoyen of “treacherous homicide” and the “improper use of … weapons” in killing Cesar Pereira in Lecheria, a town east of the capital Caracas.
In 2018, the International Criminal Court (ICC) opened an investigation into possible crimes against humanity by the Maduro regime, notably for the repression of those 2017 protests.
Earlier this month, Venezuela sent a report to the ICC rejecting the accusations, with Vice President Delcy Rogriguez branding them a “farce.”
“We’ve been dismantling (the accusations) case by case based on the reality of the facts,” she claimed.
Former attorney general Luisa Ortega petitioned the ICC in 2018 to open an investigation into alleged murders and torture, accusing Maduro and his government of “systematic and general attacks on the civilian population.”
At the beginning of this month Venezuela’s Attorney General Tarek William Saab announced the indictment of 12 members of the National Guard over the death of a 20-year-old man in Caracas in 2017 from the impact of a tear gas cannister.