Name: Araminta González
Arbitrarily detained: July 24, 2014
Released: November 18, 2017
Prison site: National Institute of Female Orientation (INOF)
Her participation in the protests against the Maduro regime in 2014 cost her years of torture that ended in psychiatric treatment and finally, in exile from her own country. Araminta worked in a pharmaceutical laboratory when she was kidnapped by armed men in Caracas, not knowing whether it was a common kidnapping or not.
“I did not know if it was a detention or kidnapping, where I was or where I was going”, she recalls. “They took my belongings, my phone, the ID card, they hooded me and they started hitting me and asking me who financed me”.
She was accused of making homemade bombs for the protesters, all because of the testimony of José Pérez Venta as the only evidence against her. In fact, Araminta helped with food and medicine students who were camped and despite the insistence of officials in the Inof, never accepted the accusation that was made.
Her case is relevant because of the amount of physical and psychological torture she suffered, which led her to suicide. “They suffocated me with plastic bags and they made me ‘the helicopter’, which is to take your hair and throw yourself against the walls”. “I still have not been able to overcome it, I have nightmares with that”, she confesses.
During her time in the INOF, Amarinta was forced to sing slogans in favor of the government and to recognize Chavez as their leader. When she did not obey, they tied her ankles and forced her to walk on the ground like that, seeing a photo of the former president for hours. She came to faint once and dropped from 84 to 49 kilos.
In addition, Araminta was forced to undress on several occasions and to check their cavities looking for cell phones. The women who guarded her told her that they were communists and that she could not overthrow something that was already constituted.
Finally, she ended up in a psychiatric hospital. She was released under a regime of filing on November 18, 2017, after which she applied for asylum in Spain. Since December 6, she has resided in the European country.