Jailed spy chief accuses Garzon of libel

17th February 2005, Comments 0 comments

17 February 2005, LIMA- The former Peruvian spy chief known as "Rasputin" who was jailed for murder, extortion and arms-smuggling, has turned accuser, alleging libel by a crusading Spanish judge.

17 February 2005

LIMA- The former Peruvian spy chief known as "Rasputin" who was jailed for murder, extortion and arms-smuggling, has turned accuser, alleging libel by a crusading Spanish judge.

Vladimiro Montesinos, the eminence grise behind the 1990-2000 government of Alberto Fujimori and the mastermind of a broad network of corruption and intimidation, filed a complaint against Spanish judge Baltasar Garzon alleging some of the statements in his book "Un mundo sin miedo" (A World Without Fear) are libellous.

According to a document to which EFE had access, Montesinos is accusing the judge of "aggravated defamation" because ofcomments he made regarding the peace Peru and Ecuador signed in 1998, an achievement of Fujimori's government that had so far remained untainted with scandal.

Garzon's book states that in 1998, Montesinos paid off then-Ecuadorian President Abdala Bucaram and a group of Ecuadorian legislators to make sure the treaty was signed.

Fujimori - who fled to his ancestral Japan after quitting amid burgeoning corruption scandals in late 2000 - boasts of the treaty as one of his administration's best achievements.

Montesinos accuses Garzon of "jeopardizing continental equilibrium" and attributing to Montesinos - "actions, statements, qualities and expressions" that damage his "honour and reputation," relying as they do on "imaginary reports."

Since June, 2001, the former chief of Peru's National Intelligence Service has been behind bars at Callao naval base on charges of human rights violations, illegal enrichment, drug trafficking, bribery, arms-trafficking and wire tapping, among others.

Montesinos claims Garzon, known for his crusade against corruption and on behalf of human rights, is acting "maliciously" and that his book evinces "visceral hatred" for members of Latin America's armed forces.

Garzon gained worldwide renown for issuing the warrant that led to the detention in Britain in 1998 of former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet on atrocities charges.

After 17 months of house arrest outside London, Britain released the elderly retired general on health grounds.

"You cannot besmirch the men in uniform who gave up their lives" nor the "honour" of the Ecuadorian Congress that signed the peace treaty, Montesinos, head of the largest corruption network in Peruvian history, said in the document.

The Peruvian courts concluded that Montesinos amassed a personal fortune of at least USD 75 million, though authorities have discovered USD 300m more in foreign bank accounts in accomplices' names.

Montesinos took advantage of his position to spy on and control almost all the country's important and influential people, and surreptitiously taped the events which brought him and Fujimori's government down.

Montesinos accused Garzon of making sensational claims in order to boost sales of his book.

Garzon's allegations that bribery played a part in the 1998 peace treaty has sparked uproars in both countries, and prompted Presidents Alejandro Toledo of Peru and Lucio Gutierrez of Ecuador to appoint official committees to investigate the charges.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

 

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