The Latin American Platform of Sex Workers (PLAPERTS) is shocked by the murder of their colleague Angelica Miriam Quintanilla, who was Director of LIQUIDAMBAR, a sex worker-led organisation in El Salvador. In March 2016, sex workers from Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico and Peru received the news that LIQUIDAMBAR wanted to join PLAPERTS. Just as quickly, PLAPERTS received news of her murder.
Numerous press releases and statements have been made in the media and on social media. Sex workers in Latin America are outraged at this act of violence. NSWP’s Regional Correspondent in Latin America has asked other activists to gather all the information available on the case, to allow NSWP to report was has happened.
It is only known that on the evening of 06 May, 2016 the body of Angelica Miriam Quintanilla was found on Avenida Independencia in San Salvador with nine bullet wounds. The area where she was found is a known area for sex work, with approximately 500 women working there. They are constantly harassed and suffer violence by the Metropolitan Agents Corps (MAC) and gang members who ask for money to let them work in the area.
On the afternoon of the day of her death, Angelica Quintanilla Hernandez, better known as Karla, was sitting in a classroom at the National University, interrupting a sociology professor. Karla, founder and director of the Liquidambar Association, was observing the presentation of a legal thesis that examined the legal framework of her profession: sex work. Angelica had helped with the research by the two co-authors of the report and after the presentation of the thesis (which got a 9/10) she said, “I thank you because I came here to do what I like the most: to defend the rights of all women who are in the same situation as me”.
The investigation into her killing is stalled because the witnesses are too afraid to give evidence.