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Presunto Culpable (Presumed Guilty)

A documentary directed by Roberto Hernández & Geoffrey Smith.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011
7:30 PM
James Bridges Theater
1409 Melnitz Hall

In December 2005 Toño Zuniga was picked up off the street in Mexico City, Mexico, and sentenced to 20 years for murder based on the testimony of a single, shaky eyewitness. PRESUMED GUILTY tells the heart-wrenching story of a man who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

A friend of Toño’s contacted two young lawyers, Roberto Hernández and Layda Negrete, who gained prominence in Mexico when they helped bring about the release of another innocent man from prison. As Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas (CIDE) legal researchers, they tracked an alarming history of corruption in the Mexican justice system (93% of inmates never see an arrest warrant, and 93% of defendants never see a judge).

Looking into Toño’s case, Roberto and Layda managed to get a retrial–on camera—and enlisted the help of filmmaker Geoffrey Smith to chronicle the saga. Shot over three years with unprecedented access to the Mexican courts and prisons, this dramatic story is a searing indictment of a justice system that presumes guilt.

"A rare – and chilling – glimpse of Mexico’s dysfunctional legal system." David Luhnow, Wall Street Journal

88 Minutes | In Spanish with English Subtitles


 Watch the Trailer:


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Cost : Free and open to the public


Download file: PresuntoCulpable-3h-2jx.pdf

Sponsor(s): Latin American Institute, Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival

Search International Institute website.