Fujimori on Trial :: Fujimori procesado

Accountability in Action :: Rindiendo cuentas

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Former Army Commander General admits there were disappearances

July 6th, 2008 · No Comments

(From left to right: Presiding Judges Víctor Prado Saldarriaga, César San Martín – President of the Court – and Hugo Príncipe Trujillo.)  

July 4, 2008

Seventy-eighth session. Pedro Villanueva Valdivia, Commander General of the Peruvian Army in 1991, completed the second day of his testimony. The witness was called by the defense and accepted during this session that there “excesses,” such as forced disappearances.

 

1.              Incidents during the hearing

 

The Court confirmed that Montesinos’ testimony is invalid.

During the last session, the Court declared Vladimiro Montesinos Torres’ testimony invalid. César Nakazaki, lawyer for former President Alberto Fujimori, requested that the Court call Montesinos to testify again, but the Court did not accept this request, meaning Montesinos’ testimony will remain invalid for this trial. However, the Court will evaluate a few of Montesinos’ former declarations that have been presented as evidence in the trial, to see if they are incorporated in the trial or not.

Montesinos, Alberto Fujimori’s former presidential advisor, has received 14 sentences to date for different corruption cases, the longest being for 20 years for the sale of arms to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). Thus Montesinos will finish his sentences in the year 2023, though one of the ways to go free earlier would be to receive a presidential pardon. The pro-Fujimori party is already collecting signatures in order to participate in the 2011 presidential elections.

 

Jesús Sosa Saavedra to be summoned

The Court declared that after hearing the testimony of the witnesses presented by Fujimori’s defense and by the Public Prosecutor, Jesús Sosa Saavedra, who was captured when the trial had already begun, would be summoned to testify.

 

2. Pedro Villanueva Valdivia’s testimony– The most relevant aspects of the witness’ testimony for the trial were:

 

Peruvian Army carried out forced disappearances

Villanueva Valdivia confirmed that in 1991 there were forced disappearances, referring to them as “excesses”: “in this type of war [against subversive groups] around the world excesses are committed due to the nature of the conflict […] it’s true that there were disappearances but there were also a lot of heroes in our army.”

 

3. Next session:

Former military general Nicolás de Bari Hermoza Ríos has been summoned to testify on Monday, July 7. Hermoza has testified in other trials that it was impossible for Fujimori not to know about the Colina detachment’s activities. The former military general is represented by lawyer César Nakazaki, who was not representing Fujimori at the time of these declarations.

Antonio Salazar, lawyer for the victims’ families has stated that Hermoza will most likely invoke his right to silence in order to not incriminate Fujimori.

 

4. Sentence of former Army Intelligence Service (SIE) director

On July 3, the Judicial Power sentenced Alberto Pinto Cárdenas to 20 years of prison for his participation in “kidnapping, forced disappearance and homicide” in the La Cantuta case, which Fujimori is also being tried for.

 

The sentence stated that the La Cantuta crime was committed by a “an organized power structure” and that the executing branch of the Colina Military Detachment’s activity was the Army Intelligence Office (DINTE) and the National Intelligence Service (SIN) and that in order to fulfill its “missions” Colina depended on the SIE’s support with personnel and logistics. This hypothesis is the same that the Public Prosecutor has described in its formal accusation against Fujimori.

 

This sentence also ruled that former army technician Wilmer Yarlequé Ordinola was a leader of one of the three subgroups within the Colina detachment.

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