Court authorizes military direct search of detentions

Court authorizes military direct search of detentions

Víctor Fuentes / Reform Agency

Tuesday, January 24, 2023 | 20:45

Mexico City.- The Supreme Court of Justice clarified today that the Army and the Navy must make direct registrations in the National Detention Registry (RND) when they deprive people of their liberty, without having to go through the Secretary of Public Security and Citizen (SSPC).

By eight votes to three, the Plenary of the Court clarified the confusing fifth transitory article of the decree by which the RND Law was issued in 2019, as part of the public security reform of the current Government.

The transitory indicates that the Mexican Armed Forces (FAM), in its public security functions, will not have to be subject to article 19 of the law, which orders:

“When the arrest is carried out by authorities that perform functions in support of public safety, these, under their strictest responsibility, must immediately notify the competent police authority of the arrest, providing the necessary information so that it generates the corresponding registry, in terms of what is established by this Law”.

Most of the ministers interpreted that the FAM are obliged to register the arrests they carry out, but directly in the RND database and without intermediaries, which is not allowed for authorities other than the police themselves.

“Although the permanent Armed Forces are not obliged to give notice of the arrest to a police authority for it to generate the record, this does not imply that it is not carried out, since said permanent Armed Forces is the one that must carry it out direct and immediate, therefore, they must have access accounts to the database”, affirms the sentence, which was presented by Minister Javier Laynez.

The Ministers Norma Piña, Luis María Aguilar and Alberto Pérez Dayan warned that exempting the FAM from article 19, and allowing them to make direct records in the RND, is the same as recognizing them as equivalent to the police and other civil public security authorities.

Aguilar recalled that the Constitution orders that the participation of the FAM in public security must always be extraordinary and subordinate.

“Why does the permanent armed force have to be the one to record that arrest and not even inform the Secretary that they did it?” questioned Pérez Dayan.

“For the purposes of registering the detention, the FAM is being given the treatment provided for the members of a public security institution in article 17 of the law, that is, that they register the detention immediately and when the person is in their custody,” explained Piña.

In another matter of this action, promoted by the former head of the CNDH, Luis Raúl González Pérez, the Court ordered Congress to legislate to provide for the actions that RND personnel must carry out when the information contained in the document is put at risk. himself, because he did not do it clearly enough.

This ruling adds to a long list of Court rulings pending compliance by Congress, which order it to issue legislation or correct the existing one, on issues such as national waters, indigenous consultation, government social communication and the single civil procedural code for the whole country, among others.

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