Two people charged in Bolivia mob attack

Members of indigenous Quechua community charged with leading mob to bury alive teenager suspected of rape and murder.

    The violence took place in a Quechua community near the municipality of Colquechaca [Al Jazeera]
    The violence took place in a Quechua community near the municipality of Colquechaca [Al Jazeera]

    Two people will be tried for murder for allegedly leading a mob that buried alive a teenager suspected of raping and killing a woman, a prosecutor has said.

    Casiano Sandi and Felicia Vargas, members of an indigenous Quechua community, have also been charged with inciting a mob and criminal association, prosecutor Milton Jara told Erbol radio station on Friday.

    Jose Luis Barrios, the chief prosecutor in Potosi province where the violence took place, earlier said that police had identified 17-year-old Santos Ramos as the possible culprit in the attack on 35-year-old Leandra Arias Janco Sunday in a Quechua community near the municipality of Colquechaca.

    He said more than 200 community members seized Ramos and buried him alive alongside his alleged victim on Wednesday night.

    A bound Ramos was brought to the woman's funeral and tossed into her grave along with her coffin, said a local reporter for an indigenous radio station, who would only speak on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals.

    Colquechaca is a town of 5,000 inhabitants located 333 kilometres southeast of Bolivia's capital, La Paz.

    Such examples of violence sometimes occur in rural and poor parts of Bolivia where police and other authorities are scarce.

    Bolivia's 2009 constitution recognises indigenous justice and allows community leaders to mete out punishment for minor infractions according to their ancestral customs.

    But that does not include killings and other major crimes.

    SOURCE: Associated Press


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