Tavares de Almeida requested new exams from the court. The inspector fails to understand how the man who accuses him didn't complain about pain in front of the judge
by Sónia Simões
The trial of PJ inspector Tavares de Almeida, who investigated the Maddie case and stands accused of torturing a railway worker, has been suspended because of a medical exam.
The case dates back to 2000, had been archived, but was reopened and arrived before the court in December, according to what 24Horas was able to establish.
Inspector Tavares de Almeida - Gonçalo Amaral's right arm - and his two colleagues, Alves da Cunha and Diamantino dos Santos, stand accused of a crime of torture. The plaintiff, Virgolino Neves, says that he was beaten during interrogation merely to confess that he had been the author of a theft at his workplace, the CP [Portuguese Rail Company].
Nine years after the complaint, inspector Tavares de Almeida requested a new exam. He wants to understand why in the forensics medical exam the emergency chart from Amadora Sintra Hospital - where the victim was assisted - doesn't mention the fracture that was diagnosed, one month later, by a private doctor. Why four months after this exam, the traces that were left by the fracture are located on other ribs.
Victim without complaints
Therefore, the inspector has requested a new examination, to be carried out through a complete forensic medical exam, that will inspect the x-ray that were made at the hospital.
The judges at the 3rd Criminal Court have replied to the request in late December, and understood that the performance of a new examination is not justified, after such a long time. Nevertheless, they accepted part of the inspector's request, and decided to request the Institute of Forensics Medicine to complete the evaluation of the physical damage and to give clarification concerning the lesions.
The experts are to clarify whether or not the lesions that the victim says to have suffered, allowed for him to stand before an instruction judge for 45 minutes without complaining about any pain.
Railway worker Virgolino Neves complains about having been beaten with a wooden board during interrogation. But he only filed the complaint after a judge released him, on the next day. He says he did that out of fear. The inspectors deny any aggression.
Session. The first session of the trial of the three PJ inspectors had been scheduled for December, but was postponed without a set date due to the request that was interposed by inspector Tavares de Almeida.
Archived. The torture accusation had been archived, but a new testimony altered the situation: a guard from the prison that is located next to the PJ asserts that Virgolino Neves asked for the services of a nurse during the night that he was kept in prison.
2000. The questioning took place in March 2000, when Virgolino was questioned by the PJ due to a theft that had occurred at his workplace. The railway worker denied.
source: 24Horas, 22.01.2009