BERNARDO CAAL XOL / GUATEMALA
JAILED FOR DEFENDING A SACRED RIVER
Bernardo Caal Xol has done everything he can to peacefully protect his people’s land and natural resources from plunder and biodiversity loss. When the river they rely on for survival was threatened by the construction of two hydroelectric power plants, Bernardo and his people protested. He was publicly smeared with repeated and baseless accusations. In 2018, a judge sentenced Bernardo to more than seven years in prison, convicting him without any evidence.