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Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance

& Other Ill Treatment

In the early years of the 21st Century, 2000 to 2025                                  

Republic of Mauritius

Civil rights are for the most part well respected, although individual cases of police brutality have been reported. There are no known political prisoners or reports of political or extrajudicial killings. 
[Freedom House Country Report, 2009]

Description: Description: Mauritius

CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Mauritius.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of Torture by Authorities are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring the moral justification for inflicting pain or inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment in order to obtain critical information that may save countless lives, or to elicit a confession for a criminal act, or to punish someone to teach him a lesson outside of the courtroom.  Perhaps your paper might focus on some of the methods of torture, like fear, extreme temperatures, starvation, thirst, sleep deprivation, suffocation, or immersion in freezing water.  On the other hand, you might choose to write about the people acting in an official capacity who perpetrate such cruelty.  There is a lot to the subject of Torture by Authorities.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.

*** ARCHIVES ***

2020 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Mauritius

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 30 March 2021

[accessed 29 July 2021]


The constitution and law prohibit such practices, but there continued to be allegations of police abuse, through either official complaints or allegations made on the radio or in the press. For example, in September, four boys accused two prison guards at the Beau Bassin Correctional Youth Center of physical assault. The two prison guards were only reprimanded.

Impunity was a significant problem in the security forces. While disciplinary actions against offending officers take place, dismissal or prosecutions are rare.


While conditions did not always meet international standards, there were no significant reports regarding prison or detention center conditions that raised human rights concerns.


Pretrial Detention: According to data from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, the NHRC, and the Bureau of Prisons, due to a backlogged court system and detainees’ inability to post bail, a significant percentage of the prison population remained in pretrial detention. In October, 53 percent of detainees were pretrial detainees, according to the NGO World Prison Brief. Lawyers believed that approximately 40 percent of pretrial detainees typically remained in custody for at least three years before going to trial. Judges routinely credited time served in custody against sentences ultimately imposed.

Conclusions and recommendations of the Committee against Torture

U.N. Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment  -- Doc. CAT/C/MUS/CO/3 (2011)

[accessed 15 Aug  2013]

Complaints, investigations and prosecutions

15. The Committee is concerned that only few complaints for torture, excessive use of force or ill-treatment by law enforcement or prison officers or cases of death occurred in police custody are investigated and prosecuted and do not usually lead to compensation (arts. 12, 13 and 14).

The State party should systematically conduct impartial, thorough and effective inquiries into all allegations of violence committed by the police or prison officers, and prosecute and punish the perpetrators in proportion to the seriousness of their acts. It should also ensure that victims or their families obtain redress and fair and adequate compensation, including means for as full rehabilitation as possible. The State party should inform the Committee of the outcome of current proceedings and on the results of the appeal lodged by the Director of Public Prosecutions against the case dismissing four police officers accused.

Mauritius must get to grips with torture if it wishes to restore confidence

Patrick Corrigan, Slugger O'Toole, 20 July 2012

[accessed 29 Jan 2014]

The Mauritian jury’s ‘not guilty’ verdict seems to show that they believed Avinash Treebhoowoon’s allegation that a confession statement produced three days after Michaela McAreavey’s murder was a police concoction, only signed by him after days of torture.   Treebhoowoon made his first official complaint of ill-treatment at a court appearance days after the murder, in January last year.   In short, he alleged he was subject to numerous beatings, whipped on the soles of his feet with a pipe, hit on the head, stripped naked and held down on a table while police tried to suffocate him with a towel and held his head in a bucket of water. On the third day he signed the statement confessing to the murder.

Mauritius: Amnesty International calls for independent investigation of torture complaints

Amnesty International, AI Index AFR 39/001/2001 - News Service Nr. 74, 25 April 2001

[accessed 29 Jan 2014]

[accessed 28 August 2016]

"The repeated accusations brought against the Mauritian authorities by individuals who claim that their right to be free from torture and ill-treatment and their right to be given a fair trial have been violated put a question mark behind the government’s commitment to the protection of human rights."

On 23 April 2001, members of the Curepipe Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in Mauritius arrested Bernard Maigrot on suspicion of killing 32-year old Vanessa Lagesse on the night of 9 to 10 March this year. He was held incommunicado for several hours after his arrest, without access to any legal assistance or his family. According to police sources, Bernard Maigrot confessed to the murder during interrogation. In a court hearing on 24 April, Bernard Maigrot withdrew the confession, claiming it had been obtained under torture and before he was able to have any contact with his lawyers. A previous suspect in the case, who was released from police detention on 13 April, has also accused the CID of ill-treatment.

Ill-treatment of criminal suspects during interrogation has been reported in a number of cases in Mauritius in recent months, and has for many years been of concern to local and international human rights monitors. Although the police or courts have in the past ordered inquiries into such allegations, these have either been inconclusive or their results have not been made public.

Freedom House Country Report - Political Rights: 1   Civil Liberties: 2   Status: Free

2009 Edition

[accessed 5 February 2013]

LONG URL   ç 2009 Country Reports begin on Page 21

[accessed 13 May 2020]

The generally independent judiciary, headed by the Supreme Court, administers a legal system that is an amalgam of French and British traditions. Civil rights are for the most part well respected, although individual cases of police brutality have been reported. There are no known political prisoners or reports of political or extrajudicial killings.


Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 5 February 2013]

[accessed 4 July 2019]

TORTURE AND OTHER CRUEL, INHUMAN, OR DEGRADING TREATMENT OR PUNISHMENT – The law prohibits such practices; however, there continued to be reports of police abuses. In September the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) found three policemen guilty of brutality after they assaulted a suspect after accusing him of being a drug addict. At year's end the Disciplined Forces Service Commission was determining disciplinary action against the police officers. The NHRC received 131 complaints of police abuse, of which 33 were alleged cases of police brutality and 10 related to verbal abuse by officers. The police department Complaints Investigation Bureau (CIB) received 383 complaints, of which 128 were allegations of police brutality or abuse

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Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance & Other Ill Treatment in the early years of the 21st Century- Mauritius",, [accessed <date>]