Posted by debito on December 12th, 2007
Well, well, well… Idi Amin escaped the rap. So did Augusto Pinochet. But Charles Taylor and Slobodan Milosevic didn’t. And now Alberto Fujimori–who foolishly left his safe haven provided by the Japanese government and has wound up getting his. Ii kimi da.
See why Debito.org has something against Fujimori here. Arudou Debito in Sapporo
Canadian Globe and Mail, December 11, 2007 at 6:15 PM EST
LIMA — Former President Alberto Fujimori was convicted and sentenced to six years in prison on Tuesday on a charge of abuse of authority stemming from an illegal search he ordered as his government imploded in scandal seven years ago.
Supreme Court Judge Pedro Guillermo Urbina declared that Mr. Fujimori was guilty of abusing his power when he ordered an aide to pose as a prosecutor and search the luxury apartment of the wife of his spy chief without a warrant in November 2000.
Mr. Fujimori, who ruled Peru from 1990 to 2000 before fleeing to Japan as his government collapsed, faces a total of seven human rights and corruption charges in multiple trials.
On Monday, an indignant Mr. Fujimori shouted his innocence and waved his arms in outrage as he went on trial in a separate case on charges he authorized an army death squad to kill leftist rebels and collaborators. He faces up to 30 years in prison if convicted for his alleged role in the killings, which came amid a government crackdown on a bloody Maoist insurgency.
Fujimori convicted and sentenced in illegal search
Peru’s former president gets six years behind bars for abuse of power. He still faces charges on other serious counts.
By Adriana León and Patrick J. McDonnell, Special to The Los Angeles Times
December 12, 2007
LIMA, PERU — Former President Alberto Fujimori was convicted of abuse of power Tuesday and sentenced to six years in prison after a judge found him responsible for an illegal search at the home of the wife of his onetime intelligence chief.
It was the first conviction in a series of criminal charges Fujimori has faced since being extradited from Chile in September.
Human rights advocates have hailed the multiple cases against Fujimori as blows against impunity. But supporters of the ex-president call him the victim of political persecution.
The abuse of power charge is among the least serious faced by Fujimori, but his conviction was a setback for the ex-president.
His daughter, Keiko Fujimori, a popular congresswoman, was visibly upset afterward, and called the decision “unjust.”
However, she added that her father had conceded the “irregularity” of the disputed search, which took place in the waning, convulsive days of his administration.
The ex-president, whose legal team had hoped for a suspended sentence, indicated that he would file a partial appeal of the conviction.
The conviction came a day after Fujimori stunned Peruvians with an emotional outburst in a separate, far more serious, case in which he stands accused of dispatching death squads to kill 25 suspected leftists. The ex-president faces a 30-year prison term in that case.
During Monday’s court session, Fujimori, 69, shouted that he was “totally innocent” of ordering the killings and argued that his decisive tactics had saved Peru from terrorism and economic ruin.
The former president also faces charges of kidnapping, corruption and bribery.
Fujimori, who is being held in a special lockup without bail, was subdued in court Tuesday as the judge took three hours to read his findings.
As the ex-leader was being led away, local media reported, he flashed a smile at his three children, who were watching proceedings from behind a glass partition.
The search at issue took place Nov. 7, 2000, in the former apartment of the wife of Vladimiro Montesinos, Fujimori’s shadowy spymaster. At the time, Montesinos was a fugitive in a mushrooming corruption case that would ultimately topple Fujimori’s government. Montesinos is now jailed here and, like Fujimori, facing multiple trials and life behind bars.
Prosecutors suspect that Fujimori ordered an aide to conduct the warrantless search in an eleventh-hour effort to collect videos or other evidence that could have implicated his administration in corruption. Montesinos, a purported master of blackmail, was known to have made clandestine videotapes of lawmakers and others receiving bribes.
Fujimori eventually fled Peru and filed his resignation by fax from Japan, his parents’ homeland.
Fujimori outburst sets tone for Peru human rights trials
Christian Science Monitor December 12, 2007 edition – http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/1212/p07s02-woam.html
Peru’s former leader let loose a tirade as his human rights and corruption trials began Monday.
By Lucien Chauvin | Correspondent of The Christian Science Monitor
The multiple human rights and corruption trials of Peru’s Alberto Fujimori got off to a colorful start this week when the former president launched into a tirade denying the charges against him and taking credit for the country’s current economic boom.
Mr. Fujimori, who ruled Peru from 1990-2000, began facing a three-judge panel Monday on charges that he approved the death-squad murders of 15 people in 1991 and nine students and a professor the following year. The trial also includes the charge of authorizing the kidnapping and torture of a journalist and a businessman, also in 1992.
He also may face a seven-year sentence in a separate trial on abuse of authority charges.
Fujimori disrupted the mundane administrative chores of the initial hearings Monday when he asked permission to briefly address the court before entering a plea.
The former president immediately threw up his arms, contorted his face, and started screaming that he had saved Peru from imminent collapse when he first took office in July 1990.
“I received Peru in 1990 in a state of collapse, with hyperinflation, international isolation, and widespread terrorism… Peru is progressing today because there were reforms in the context of respect for human rights,” he yelled. “I totally reject the charges. I am innocent.”
After shouting down the chief judge for a few moments, Fujimori stopped, politely thanked the court for the chance to speak and, smoothing his dark gray, pinstripe suit, calmly returned to his seat in the center of the small courtroom built for the trial on a police base where he has been incarcerated since September.
The outburst fits the image that both Fujimori’s supporters and detractors hold of him, and it is likely to set the tone for the trials, which are expected to last at least six months.
“If he acts this way, in the context of a trial and while under arrest, imagine how he must have been when he had all the power in his hands as president,” says Gloria Cano, a lawyer representing victims of those killed in the 1991 massacre.
Fujimori is proud of his legacy
Fujimori, a math professor, stunned Peruvians in 1990 by coming out of nowhere to win the presidency. He took office with inflation galloping in four digits, the economy shrinking by double digits, and nearly 75 percent of Peru’s territory under a state of emergency because of the actions of two leftist rebels groups, the Shining Path and Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement.
Fujimori’s economic reforms stopped inflation and reinserted Peru into the world financial community while new antiterrorism laws facilitated the arrests of the heads of the two subversive groups, effectively stopping them as threats to the Peruvian state. Fujimori and his followers hope that this is what Peruvians remember, and it is what he focused on in Monday’s outburst.
Opponents do not deny these successes, but say they came with a high cost to the country’s democracy.
When Congress balked at economic and legal changes, Fujimori simply closed it and the judiciary in April 1992, originally trying to govern alone with the Army and intelligence service. When that was not possible, he had a new Constitution written. The main change, foreshadowing a current trend in the region, allowed for immediate presidential reelection.
Fujimori ran and won again in 1995, and reinterpreted his own Constitution to allow for a third bid in 2000. He also won that contest, although later evidence would show that massive voter fraud committed throughout the electoral cycle helped him.
His third term only lasted four months. He fled Peru in November 2000, escaping a massive corruption scandal that would land his closest collaborators, including former Army chief Gen. Nicolas Hermoza and security adviser Vladimiro Montesinos, in prison.
Fujimori spent five years in Japan, his parents’ homeland, but flew secretly to Chile in 2005, with the alleged intention of returning home in time for elections the following year. He never made it. Chilean authorities arrested him and the country’s Supreme Court approved this past September seven of the 12 extradition requests filed against him.
Fujimori’s supporters are confident that he will be exonerated and make a comeback for the 2011 elections.
“Today was an opportunity to the president to set the record straight. He is the man responsible for Peru’s good fortune. Peruvians are going to see through this charade. They are the real judges here and the verdict will be in our favor,” says Rep. Carlos Raffo.
Recent trials of former collaborators, however, are not promising. Ten of Fujimori’s former cabinet members were found guilty in late November of violating the Constitution because of their support for the 1992 move that closed Congress. Nine received suspended sentences, while one was given a 10-year sentence.
Even more damaging, his former security adviser and right-hand man, Mr. Montesinos, testified last week that he did not make any decisions on his own, always taking orders from Fujimori. That trial was about election fraud in 2000, but Montesinos, already found guilty in more than 20 cases from the Fujimori era, will also be one of the principal witnesses in the trial of his former boss.
Law and Order | 11 December, 2007 [ 12:00 ]
Peru: 30-Year Prison Sentence Recommended for Alberto Fujimori
Living in Peru.com
© La Republica
(LIP-ir) — In a 20-minute statement, government prosecutor, José Antonio Peláez requested that Peru’s Supreme Court sentence Alberto Fujimori to 30 years in prison and fine him 100 million soles for the massacre that took place at Barrios Altos, the death of students and a teacher from La Cantuta University and the kidnapping of two people.
The government prosecutor clarified that Alberto Fujimori was not being tried for his fight against terrorism but was on trial for the “dirty war” led by the Grupo Colina, a paramilitary death squad.
He added that Fujimori had been the person responsible for giving the Colina Group its orders and was therefore responsible for the people that were killed and the kidnapping of a journalist and a businessman.
These accusations and others caused Peru’s former president to cry out his innocence in the courtroom.
César Nakasaki, Alberto Fujimori’s lawyer stated that it was natural for a man that felt he was innocent to respond in this manner while unfairly being accused.
He added that the former Head of State was offended and that he could not ask an innocent man not to speak out against the unjust accusations that were being made.
Fujimori’s outburst was a desperate political speech made when he lost control after realizing that the trial was not going in his favor, said political analyst Carlos Reyna. He stated that this did not help the former president at all.