"Presumed Guilty" ("Presunto Culpable") is the story of Toño Zúñiga, a computer vendor from the Iztapalapa section of Mexico City, who was wrongly accused and convicted of murder in December 2005. On Monday, it won the award for Best Investigative Journalism at the 31st Annual News & Documentary Emmy ceremony in New York City.
The film’s director, Roberto Hernández, took the opportunity at the ceremony to dedicate his award to Troy Davis, noting that unlike the United States, Mexico has no death penalty.
“That’s why we were able to save Toño,” Hernández says, “and why Troy Davis is not longer here.”
"Presumed Guilty" first aired in the United States on PBS in July 2010. An extended cinema version premiered this past February to mass acclaim. In March, a federal judge suspended its exhibition due to a complaint from a witness shown in the documentary. The film re-premiered after its distributor complied with an order to conceal the witness’ identity.
Imagine being picked up off the street, told you have committed a murder you know nothing about and then finding yourself sentenced to 20 years in jail. In December 2005 this happened to Toño Zúñiga in Mexico City and, like thousands of other innocent people, he was wrongfully imprisoned. The award-winning Presumed Guilty is the story of two young lawyers and their struggle to free Zúñiga.