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Luis Quintero

HRD, Trustee
Barranquilla Commune of San Javier

Luis Quintero was a trustee in 2019 of the Barranquilla Commune of San Javier in the province of Esmeraldas. He is an Afro-descendant leader and defender of human, labour and environmental rights who was prosecuted for the protest carried out by the Barranquilla community against the company Energy & Palma, for the illegal occupation of 251 hectares of communal territory by the palm plantation. Despite being under a complex treatment of surgeries and chemotherapy for cancer, on 8 September 2021 he was sentenced and criminalised together with three defenders, in the first instance, to pay 151,000 US dollars to the palm oil company for exercising his right to protest and to defend the environment.


Luis Quintero was a trustee in 2019 of the Comuna Barranquilla de San Javier in the province of Esmeraldas.As an Afro-descendant leader, he has a long history of defence and peaceful struggle for respect for the communal and collective territory of black communities. Together with other inhabitants of the region, he participated in the process to obtain a collective property title over 1,500 hectares of communal territory made up of the tropical rainforests of Chocó, one of the most biodiverse regions on the planet. Since 2005, Luis Quintero has been instrumental in the process of peacefully defending his community's territory and environment from logging and palm oil companies that have attempted to appropriate community lands in order to extract tropical timber and use the land for oil palm plantations.

Members of the Barranquilla community have seen their traditional sources of livelihood related to the forest affected and have denounced that the rivers are being polluted.On 8 September 2021 Luis Quintero was convicted and criminalised along with his companions and community leaders Nestor Caicedo, Andrés Arce and Samir Mina Caicedo for exercising their legitimate right to peaceful defence and protest against the activities of the companies that have illegally installed themselves in collective territory, causing permanent impacts on the health of the people and the local fauna.