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Part I
The Repression

Nunca Más (Never Again) - Report of Conadep  - 1984


Secret detention centres in Jujuy province

The main secret detention centres in Jujuy province were Guerrero and the Provincial Police Headquarters. The former was located in the district of the same name, near the Ledesma sugar mill, and the headquarters in the centre of the provincial capital, San Salvador de Jujuy.

On I August 1976 1 presented myself of my own free will at the Central Police Department of Jujuy, asking for an interview with Chief Inspector Haig, who talked to me since I had once been under his command. He accused me of being the leader of the Calilegua guerrilla group and had me arrested on this charge. Later this Inspector and Deputy Inspector Viltes interrogated me. When I denied the charges they were making they took me by car, without a blindfold or bonds, to Guerrero. When we reached one of the buildings in the complex I was put into a room where I saw a great many blindfolded prisoners being kept in appalling physical conditions. At that point I was blindfolded and my hands tied like the others. The next day they took me to a room with two other men, Miguel Garnica and Germán Córdoba, both now disappeared. That same afternoon I was taken to the first floor where I was brutally tortured with beatings and submarino treatment, with Haig and Viltes taking part personally. After that I was transferred to the 'condemned room', where they kept the people destined not to come out again. There were eighteen prisoners in there. Every night they counted us and all of us were tortured daily. The torture consisted mainly of pouring boiling water into the anus and between the legs, red-hot wire on the buttocks and beatings with sticks on the back and legs until the victim fainted. For food they gave us a bit of onion or raw cabbage to share among several. Every night we heard shots and we were kept under constant threat of death. At night the Gendarmería were in charge of the camp, in the morning the Army and in the afternoon the Police. Among those there I remember my uncle, Salvador Cruz, Román Riveros, Domingo Reales, Miguel Garnica and his youngest brother, Germán Córdoba, the Diaz brothers, Manzu and Dr. Aredes, They all came from the Calilegua area and the town of Libertador General San Martín, and they are all disappeared. At that time they were in a very bad state both physically and mentally, with gangrene in their eyes, on their hands and legs. Several of them were delirious. Once when they took me to be tortured I heard Haig saying we must be made to confess, and this was in fact a reference to a confession demanded from me by Monsignor Medina, in exchange for which he said I would be given a pardon and a trial. I told him I had nothing to confess. He called me obstinate and the men around him began to beat me. Despite all this I was transferred soon afterwards to Police Headquarters, where I was made an officially recognized prisoner. (Humberto Campos, file No, 2545).

The 'disappeared' people mentioned by Señor Campos were kidnapped from their homes on 27 July 1976. Nearly all of them were workers for the Ledesma sugar company. Uniformed troops burst into their homes in the middle of a power cut, arresting more than 200 people in two areas. They were all taken to the Guerrero secret detention centre, where they suffered the brutal tortures described above. Later, part of this group was transferred to Police Headquarters, from which they were either set free or put at the disposition of the National Executive. Those who had been left in very bad shape by torture were abandoned near the Jujuy Hospital, where anonymous phone calls were received giving instructions to pick them up. Out of all those arrested over seventy are still missing today. The testimony of Humberto Campos is backed up by hundreds of similar depositions.





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