Fujimori on Trial :: Fujimori procesado

Accountability in Action :: Rindiendo cuentas

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Argentine expert says orders for state crimes are never written

September 5th, 2008 · No Comments

(Argentine expert, Col. José Luis García)

September 3, 2008

Ninety-sixth session. Former Argentine military official, José Luis García, who spoke as an expert, said that the Cantuta crime shares many similarities with the crimes committed in El Salvador since in both countries there was a national policy of impunity for the perpetrators.

1. Incidents during the hearing 


Fujimori’s health 

After the Court’s approved for former President Alberto Fujimori to have a post-op evaluation, the Institute of Neoplastic Illnesses (INEN) read its medical report, recommending that the defendant receive dentistry and gastroenterological treatments. The medical report also indicated that Fujimori has a 1.5 cm cyst on his pancreas and recommended tests to see what the nature of the cyst is. The Court has called for the Institute of Legal Medicine to coordinate with the INEN for these medical exams to be carried out as soon as possible.

Regarding the role of evidence

The Court ordered that the rules regarding the role of document evidence be published and that both the prosecution (the Public Prosecutor as well as the lawyers for the victims’ families) and the defense be notified of these rules in order to continue with the next phase of the criminal trial.


2. International expert – Among the most outstanding parts of what expert José Luis García said, divided into five topics according to his knowledge of them:


1. Peru’s situation with terrorism in 1990

2. Similar military formation and doctrine in Latin America

According to García, the majority of Latin American countries adapted to the “National Security Doctrine,” which was imposed by the United States with the aim to confront international communism in the region. For this reason, the United States prepared approximately 60,000 military officials in the School of the Americas in Panama for combating guerrillas through torture, extortion and extrajudicial executions. Members of the Colina Military Detachment, such as Santiago Martín Rivas and Carlos Pichilingüe Guevara, are some of the many who participated in this coursework at the School of the Americas.

3. Anti-terrorist strategy in Peru at that time

The Peruvian Constitution, the Peruvian Army manuals and especially the Directive No. 003-91 — signed by Fujimori during his first government in order to combat terrorism, which Fujimori’s defense uses as one of the main proofs of his innocence — at all times manifests that the president, then Alberto Fujimori, had power to order and command over the Armed Forces.

The expert also referred to the similarities between the Cantuta crime committed by the Colina Military Detachment and the extrajudicial execution of seven priests in El Salvador, saying that in both crimes the State gave “safety to the murderers” through the Armed Forces.

4. How orders were given and carried out

The orders were verbal, never written: “The orders, guidelines, regulations […] were all always done verbally, never written. The whole world knows that these are undercover operations, they leave no trace.” José Luis García said that in his country, Argentina, these orders in exceptional regimes (regimes during which certain fundamental rights, such as the right to gather, were suspended), were never written.

5. Low-intensity war

García also said that based on his experience in Argentina and other Latin American countries, in the 1990s in Peru, a low-intensity war was carried out, which has been confirmed in United States national security documents: “They defined the enemy as the communists and everything that focused on the misery of the poor. Now they say the enemy is terrorism, drug-trafficking and migration that do not affect our countries […] Since then, the countries divided themselves in security zones, security sub-zones and security areas for internal control, as was seen in Peru.”

3. Next session


At 12:45 — with the session having lasted less than four hours, after being suspended since Wednesday, Aug. 28 — Fujimori’s lawyer, César Nakazaki, requested that the session be suspended once again in order to organize his documentation. Thus the Court suspended the hearing until Friday, Sept. 5, when Argentine expert José Luis García will continue to speak.


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