Chilean Pinochet dictatorship’s sexual abuse


This 9 November 2013 video says about itself:

The Colony: Chile’s dark past uncovered | Al Jazeera Correspondent

How did a secret German sect in Chile become a haven for Nazi fugitives and a torture centre for the Pinochet regime?

Forty years after the US-backed military coup that brought General Augusto Pinochet to power in Chile, the truth about the sordid abuses and crimes that took place during his dictatorship are still emerging.

The mountains of Patagonia in southern Chile witnessed a particularly bizarre chapter of the Pinochet era; one that is still claiming victims today. In 1961, a former Nazi corporal called Paul Schaefer fled Germany, along with hundreds of others, to found a sect in southern Chile.

In an idyllic rural enclave framed by the Andes Mountains he created a virtual state within a state – one where horrifying events unfolded. Initially with the ignorance of the government, and then with the complicity of the Pinochet regime, children were separated from their parents at birth and raised in a Kinder House. Men and women were kept apart and often drugged, while Schaefer systematically sexually abused boys and, occasionally, girls.

It also served as a haven for Nazi fugitives – such as Walter Rauff, the inventor of the portable gas chamber, and Joseph Mengele, the so-called ‘Angel of Death’ – who were permitted to hide out there in exchange for overseeing sophisticated forms of torture.

All of this took place with the full knowledge of the Pinochet regime, whose notorious intelligence chief, General Manuel Contreras, would often visit the site.

In The Colony: Chile’s dark past uncovered, the truth about what took place inside the Colony is revealed through the story of Winfried Hempel. Now 35, Hempel was born into the Colony and raised there without any knowledge of who his parents were. When he first left its grounds, he was 20 years old, spoke no Spanish, had no notion of the country in which he lived and had never seen a television, computer or mobile phone.

Although he initially struggled to adapt to the world beyond Colonia Dignidad, he gradually learned to speak Spanish, received his high school certificate and eventually qualified as a lawyer. Al Jazeera’s Lucia Newman has followed the story of the Colonia Dignidad since 1996 – at one point even being turned away from the site at gunpoint. As a Chilean, she wants to expose the crimes that took place there – crimes that her country was not only complicit in, but an active participant to.

Another video used to say about itself:

Torture and Child Sex Abuse in Chile Cult

5 February 2013

State sponsored torture, child sex abuse, nazis and evangelical preachers – sick Chile cult shocks the world.

This village in central Chile was for 40 years the domain of the notorious “Colonia Dignidad” cult, scene of multiple child sex abuse convictions.

Now witnesses are saying the sick sect was also used as a torture centre by the Chilean government under the Pinochet dictatorship.

Adriana Borquez says she was held against her will and tortured in the cult commune during 1975.

[Adriana Borquez, Torture Victim]:

“We want justice. There are detainees who were disappeared in Colonia Dignidad. There are graves of the people they killed, there are torture victims, there are hundreds of torture victims there.”

In January this year 16 cult leaders were sentenced for child sex abuse crimes, following the conviction of the cult’s leader back in 2006.

Political victims now want recognition that the closed society was also used by the Pinochet regime to torture dissidents.

[Adriana Borquez, Torture Victim]:

“We were detained in 1975. I came into exile in 1976 and since then not one day has passed that I have not worked for human rights and justice.”

The secretive sect was established in 1961 by former nazi turned evangelical preacher Paul Schaefer.

Schaefer died in prison in 2010 after being convicted of over 20 child sex abuse cases.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Brave women testify to Pinochet regime sex abuse

Thursday 4th December 2014

Socialist activists tell of fascist abuse

FOUR women who say they were sexually tortured as political prisoners following Chile’s 1973 fascist coup have testified in support of a complaint they hope will bring to light dictatorship-era rapes that have been buried by fear, shame and silence.

The allegations were made in a complaint filed in May and the women gave their testimony to Chilean judge Mario Carroza this week.

They are being allowed to raise the decades-old charges because of international human rights accords recently signed by Chile, said Mr Carroza, a specialist in crimes against humanity who is presiding over the case.

The women also are pressing Chile to update its 140-year-old penal code to classify the rape of political prisoners and torture as political crimes, which would subject violators to harsher sentences than currently allowed.

“We demand that the Chilean government, that the authorities and the state, change the laws and accept that this sort of sexual torture exists,” said Nieves Ayress, 66, a teacher and community activist now living in New York.

Ms Ayress was a 25-year-old socialist activist when she was detained in 1974 along with her father and 15-year-old brother. Upon her release in 1976 she was forced into exile.

She appeared before Carroza late Monday to present her testimony and underwent examinations to document the lasting psychological impact and physical scars she bears as a result of the alleged assaults – including being penetrated with rats and dogs and ordering her father and brother to rape her, though the rape wouldn’t actually take place.

It is unclear when Mr Carroza will formally accept the case and start the investigation that could lead to criminal charges.

Cristian Castillo, director of the memorial site created at a former torture centre known as Villa Grimaldi, said he has no doubt other victims will be emboldened to speak out “as a result of the declarations by these women that specifically denounce this crime against humanity.”

Officials say more than 40,000 people were victims of the dictatorship led by General Augusto Pinochet, including more than 3,000 who were killed.

More than four decades after two young US citizens were brutally tortured and murdered, along with thousands of Chilean workers, students and political activists, a court in Chile has sentenced two former military intelligence officers in connection with the crime, while directly indicting the US government for setting it into motion: here.

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