Fujimori on Trial :: Fujimori procesado

Accountability in Action :: Rindiendo cuentas

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Public Prosecutor’s Office begins final arguments

January 19th, 2009 · 1 Comment

January 12, 2009

One hundred thirty-fifth session. Public Prosecutor José Peláez Bardales initiated the final arguments phase of the trial by requesting that the Court apply the theory of command responsibility for this case. Peláez argued that the defendant, former President Alberto Fujimori, should be sentenced to 30 years in prison for this charge.

The Public Prosecutor’s Office is a body within the Peruvian government and is responsible for defending Peruvian law, citizens’ rights, public interests and representing the society in trials.

I. Public Prosecutor’s arguments

1. Fujimori had control over the acts as well as command over Colina

Peláez argued that Fujimori had control over the Barrios Altos and La Cantuta crimes, as well as the kidnapping of businessman Samuel Dyer and journalist Gustavo Gorriti. Peláez said that as president and chief of the armed forces, Fujimori — through Vladimiro Montesinos and Nicolás de Bari Hermoza Ríos — had control over the crimes and acts carried out by the Colina Military Detachment.

Due to the control Fujimori had in these crimes, the Public Prosecutor argues he had the power to impede them: “In his position [Fujimori] had the ability to avoid and inhibit illegal activities committed by this criminal organization.”

2. Thirty years in prison

The Public Prosecutor explained the reasons that Fujimori should be sentenced to 30 years in prison, arguing that Fujimori as president and the “man behind the scenes,” had command responsibility for the Barrios Altos and La Cantuta crimes and kidnapping of Dyer and Gorriti.

According to the Public Prosecutor’s Office, the majority of people in charge of these crimes have already been tried and sentenced, thus it requests that the person with command responsibility also be punished:

“The murderer’s extreme cruelty, their pleasure and ferociousness in tormenting the victims, the clandestine graves, the use of quicklime and incinerating the remains in the Cantuta case, and their absolute coldness during executions requires that they be punished along with those who gave the orders, such as Fujimori.”

The Public Prosecutor’s Office also insists on 30 years in prison as it represents an “energetic defense of life” that was unjustly and cruelly taken away by members of the Colina Military Detachment, which was a formal part of the Peruvian army.

The Public Prosecutor also stated that in this way a verdict “does not constitute vengeance nor political persecution, but rather is a request for justice in light of these crimes in order to demand punishment for all those responsible — for those who executed as well as those who gave the orders […] If a president must be subject to a criminal sentence, nobody can impede it, justice must take its course.”

II. Next session

The next session will take place on Jan. 14.


1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Amy Griffin, Esq. // Jan 20, 2009 at 10:34 am

    I am a New York lawyer and state prosecutor who has followed the history of these crimes for many years. To be able to witness these prosecutions gives me tremendous satisfaction, both professional and personal. I never thought I would see this in my lifetime.
    I want to commend and thank you on this website for making it possible for the world to watch these proceedings. You are doing a great service for human rights the world over.

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