Chile: ex-guerrilla member living in France seeks extradition

Ricardo Palma Salamanca was convicted of killing Jaime Guzmán, a senator and a lawyer in 1991

Chile: ex-guerrilla member living in France seeks extradition

The Chilean government affirmed that it solicited the French administration the extradition of Ricardo Palma Salamanca after 22 years on the run. The ex-guerrilla member who used to be part of the Patriotic Front of Manuel Rodriguez (FPMR), an extremist group that fought against the dictatorship of General Augusto Pinochet, was convicted of killing Jaime Guzmán, a right-wing senator and lawyer back in 1991.

*** The rebel was also found guilty of kidnapping the son of Cristián Edward, the owner of a well known newspaper in Chile, the murder of Guzmán, Colonel Luis Fontaine Manríquez, and Victor Valenzuela Montecinos*** 

The original plan of the FPMR was for Salamanca to acompany Raúl Escobar Poblete aka "Comandante Emilio" as reinforcement during the protests against the country's then current situation. As stated by the newspaper La Tercera, Guzmán changed his route. Due to this, mobs of young people intercepted his car and starting shooting him causing his death.

Salamanca was sentences to 30 years in prison and life imprisonment

Four years after being imprisoned in a high-security cell in Santiago, Chile, the rebel managed to escape in a helicopter. According to the BBC, on December 30th, 1996, “the pilot lowered down an armored cage, into which Palma Salamanca and several others jumped and made their escape”. 

He was thought to have been living in Mexico before moving to Cuba and then France

After his prison break, Salamanca had been on the run for 22 years. He was thought to have been living in Mexico before moving to Cuba and then France. On February 15th, the rebel was arrested on a street in Paris by agents of Interpol and has been ordered to visit the police station daily, according to the Chilean administration after a jury judged that that would be enough punishment for his actions, for the time being.  

Representatives of the French government stated that the institution will examine the request next month

Mario Carroza, a Chilean judicial official, stated that the South American country hopes that the extradition will be approved “immediately” so that the criminal completes his prison sentences. In response, representatives of the French government stated that the institution will examine the request next month.  

 

Latin American Post | Susana Cicchetto

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