Inês Etienne Romeu
|Inês Etienne Romeu|
|Born||December 18, 1942|
|Died||April 27, 2015 (Age 72)|
She is believed to have been the only captive to survive detention in a Brazilian torture centre known as the Casa da Morta, "the house of death"
Inês Etienne Romeu was a Brazilian political prisoner held in extrajudicial detention in a Brazilian torture camp in the early 1970s.
Romeu has been described as the sole captive to survive the camp. The director, Paulo Malhães, would later claim that the purpose of the center was to convince suspected political opponents to serve as double agents against regime opponents. The main technique used to turn suspects into double agents was torture, which would be backed up by blackmail and clandestine payments.
Romeu was the only captive held in the center whom their torturers trusted to serve as a double agent. However, once she was put in the field, her handlers decided she was insincere, and she was re-apprehended and given a life sentence. She ended up being imprisoned for a further eight years, being released in 1979.
Romeu published a memoir, describing her detention, torture, but rape and sexual humiliation. She described making three suicide attempts during the 96 days she was held in the torture center. Her handlers video-taped her counting out her clandestine payment, while repeating her mission. She was warned the video would be released to her colleagues, if her handlers were dissatisfied with her efforts. She was warned that if she defected security officials would apprehend her sister in her stead.