In 1996, Karen Tayag Vertido worked as Executive Director of the Davao City Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the Philippines. She filed a complaint against the then President of the Chamber, Jose B. Custodio, accusing him of raping her. She alleged that the accused offered her a lift home following a business meeting one evening and that, instead, raped her in a nearby hotel.
Ms Vertido subsequently submitted a communication to the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW Committee). She alleged that the acquittal of Mr Custodio breached the right to non-discrimination, the right to an effective remedy, and the freedom from wrongful gender stereotyping, in violation of articles 2(c), 2(d), 2(f) and 5(a) of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).