The case addressed in this work is played by Maria da Penha Fernandes
who lived in an abusive marriage for 23 years, in which she suffered serious
assaults. In 1983, Maria da Penha, from Ceará in Brazil and Pharmacist
suffered a double murder attempt by her husband Marco Antônio Herredia
Viveiros, a university professor of economy. First he tried to kill her with a shot
in the back, which let her became paraplegic; after, another time, his partner
tried to electrocute her while bathing in a bathtub. After this assassination
attempt she get the courage, denounced him, was able to leave the house in
order to a judicial order and started the battle for her ex husband be sentenced.
The defendant had been sentenced twice in 1991 and 1996 by local
courts but, using judicial remedies against the jury's conviction, he was never
arrested and was sentenced to 15 years in prison.
In view of the delay and judicial neglect of Brazil, Maria da Penha
appealed to International Justice. Initially, she presented the case to the Inter
American Commission on Human Rights. In order to achieve this objective, the
pharmacist sought help from the The Center for Justice and International
Law (CEJIL) and the The Latin American and Caribbean Committee for the
Defense of Women’s Rights (CLADEM). However, before the commission,
Brazil did not take any action.
After 18 years of that, the Organization of American States (OAS), in
2001, blamed the country for omission and negligence about domestic violence,
based on the report of Maria da Penha. The Organization of American States
(OAS) recommended that Brazil take steps to create public policies that would
inhibit domestic violence against women.