Saturday, 13 July 2013

Argentina: Sentences for appropriators

Earlier this week, I wrote that three people were standing trial for the "appropriation", as it is known, of a baby born during the dictatorship in Argentina.

The baby in question is Elena Gallinari Abinet, now in her mid-30s, and the defendants were the couple who brought her up, former police officer Domingo Madrid and his wife, María Mercedes Elichalt, and the doctor who signed their false birth certificate, Silvia Marta Kirilosky.

The sentences have been handed down, with the "appropriators" getting ten years each in jail, and the doctor five and a half.

Elena's maternal grandmother, Leonor Alonso, approached the Mothers and Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo in her search for her daughter and grandchild. The child being brought up by the Madrid family had been on the radar of the Grandmothers since 1981. In 1986, Argentina set up its national genetic database to help identify the disappeared children, and the following year Elena's true identity was confirmed and, at the age of ten, she met her biological family. 

Elena was hoping that the trial would reveal more details about where she was born, but it seems that this wish was not fulfilled; Madrid insisted that the baby was given to him by a colleague and it is still unclear where the mother was held or where she gave birth.

The ten-year sentences were the maximum possible. It's a decent result, although of course late (since the crime has been evident since at least 1987) and unfortunately does not clarify everything which happened to Maria Leonor Abinet.

Tres condenas por apropiación (Pagina/12)
Condenan a 10 años a una pareja de apropiadores de una menor durante la dictadura (Telam)

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