Press Release Nº
EXHUMATION PROCESS IN TOTOS ENDS
simultaneous procedures at Ccarpacassa
and the cemetery of
This afternoon ended the exhumation procedure in the area
of Ccarpacassa, where it was possible to recover the remains
of three people presumably assassinated by Army members in
April 1983. This procedure took place simultaneously to another
at the cemetery of Totos, where the remains of a fourth victim
were found. This person was assassinated and buried in the
grave of Ccarpacassa, and after a year of his disappearance,
his body was found by a relative and buried at the village
Both procedures started at 9 o’clock in the morning,
with the presence of two Special Prosecutors for Forced Disappearances,
Extrajudicial Executions and Exhumations of Clandestine Graves,
Felipe Villavicencio from the city of Lima and Ana Isabel
Barreda from Ayacucho.
Relatives of the victims recognized
clothing of their loved ones
When finally the experts found the first remains and clothing
in the grave of Ccarpacassa, the relatives present at the
site were invited to try to identify the remains found.
Marcelina Cconislla, wife of Rigoberto Lopez León,
said that she recognized the green sweater her husband was
wearing when he disappeared. Similar situations were the
ones of Irma Puchuri, who recognized among the remains found
in the grave the blue jacket worn by her husband Julio Godoy
Bellido, and Gertrudis Carhuaz, who said she recognized the
blue sweater worn by her husband Primitivo Tucno Medina.
Although the relatives allegedly recognized these clothing,
the facts will be confirmed when the forensic experts complete
the identification process of the remains found.
According to existing information, between April 8th and
15th, 1983, at the district of Totos four people were arrested
by combined Army and Police forces in the area. These people
were accused of being part of the Shining Path and had been
part of a list of alleged members of the terrorist group
because they did not go the community meeting convoked by
the Police in the area.
Findings at the cemetery of Totos
The remains of a fourth person have been found at the cemetery
of Totos. Marcelino Zamora Vivanco was exhumed after one
year of disappearing by his wife, who - after she found out
what had happened to her husband - went in search for his
remains and buried him.
At the same cemetery, the skull of Rigoberto Lopez León
was found. His wife Marcelina Cconislla also found the remains
of her husband at the grave of Ccarpacassa, and although she
tried to take him to the cemetery, she was only able to carry
The relatives of the victims of Ccaparcassa were accompanied
by a group of psychologists of the Truth and Reconciliation
Commission and representatives of the Peace and Hope Association,
a human rights institution that supported these families since
the facts occurred in 1983.
Concern among relatives
After finding the remains of only three out of the fifteen
victims that were allegedly buried in the grave of Sancaypata,
members of the Joint Work Platform for the Investigation of
Mass Graves, which includes the Prosecutor’s Office,
the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the Ombudsman’s
Office and the Human Rights National Coordinator, gave an explanation
to the inhabitants of Quispillacta, the village where most
of the victims came from.
The forensic experts said that the exhumed graves in the area
of Sancaypata showed signs of having been previously broken
into. As more than 19 years have passed since the fact, it
is possible that animals in the area had disturbed the remains
and transported them to some other places. These were some
of the technical explanations given to the relatives.
However, it was impossible to avoid the consternation and pain
among the relatives who wanted to see the remains of their
loved ones and who unfortunately had to leave without accomplishing
their wishes. In view of the results, the families asked the
Joint Platform to visit other graves that would have been identified
near the area of Sancaypata.
This procedure was carried out in the morning. Forensic experts
accompanied the relatives to the place where they said there
was a mass grave. But on that site they were not able to find
human remains, and the same happened at two other sites where
no remains were found. Therefore, the relatives of Quispillacta
decided to continue with the process of identifying the remains
found during the exhumation of the grave of Sancaypata.
During the three days of work, the experts were able to exhume
the remains of seven persons: three in the graves of Sancaypata,
three in the graves of Ccarpacassa and one in the cemetery
Lima, August 27th, 2002
Office of Communications and