Lucía Pérez's parents during a march to demand justice, in 2016.Atlas
In October 2016, Argentine Lucía Pérez was 16 years old when she was pronounced dead in a first aid room in Mar del Plata.
More than six years later, Justice has sentenced Matías Farías, 29, to life imprisonment for supplying her with drugs, raping her and killing her.
Juan Pablo Offidani, 48, has received a sentence of eight years in prison —which added to a previous conviction accumulates a total of 15— for considering him a criminally responsible secondary participant in the crime of "sexual abuse with carnal access aggravated by the supply of narcotics”.
The conviction was received with applause by dozens of people who had gathered in front of the Oral Criminal Court 2 in the city of Mar del Plata, 400 kilometers south of Buenos Aires.
“With this perpetual life that we got for Farias today everything changed.
Until yesterday we did not even know if this hearing was going to be held or not, if there was going to be this sentence or not.
Now, no drug dealer, no
, is going to break the ass of any more girl like they did to Lucía," said the victim's mother, Marta Montero, as she left the court.
“Lucía was destroyed, they destroyed her internally.
She was raped up to 15 minutes before her death.
They raped her until her body ended up dying, "added Montero on the verge of tears, after thanking the accompaniment of feminist and human rights organizations.
The case of Lucía Pérez became one of the symbols of the fight against femicides in Argentina, but the first judicial process was riddled with irregularities.
A few days after her death, the prosecutor in charge informed the media that the teenager had been impaled to death, an accusation that her experts later denied and caused her to be removed from the case.
In 2018, the judges, in a highly contested sentence, acquitted those accused of femicide, considering that the reason for Pérez's death was "intoxication by overdose" and that there was no abuse but a consensual sexual relationship.
Farías and Offidani were sentenced, instead, for selling drugs.
The ruling caused great social outrage and was appealed.
In 2020, a court of second instance annulled the sentence and ordered a new oral trial to be held, considering that the magistrates "unduly applied themselves in the analysis of the intimate life of the victim prior to the event, without contextualizing the facts from a perspective of genre".
In the grounds of the annulled sentence, the magistrates made reference to the victim's previous sexual experiences, her status as a drug user and her absences from school, among other elements, to validate the version of consent used by the defendants.
In the ruling made public this Thursday, the magistrates asked the Public Prosecutor's Office to investigate "the possible presence of third parties" at Farías' home who may have hidden key evidence at the crime scene.
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