British judge orders ETA militant extradited to Spain

14th April 2015, Comments 0 comments

A British judge ruled Tuesday that a convicted ETA militant who spent years in prison in Spain should be extradited back to the country.

Antonio Troitino spent 24 years in Spanish prisons for his role in 22 murders by ETA, the armed Basque separatist movement.

Spain requested his extradition on the grounds of counterfeiting documents and belonging to a "terrorist group".

Judge Howard Riddle made the decision at Westminster Magistrates Court in central London. In the meantime Troitino has been granted bail, a court official said.

In the 1980s, Troitino was a member of ETA's Madrid unit, which carried out some of the separatist group's bloodiest attacks.

He was arrested in 1987 and sentenced to more than 2,000 years for the 22 killings.

A legal bungle in April 2011 set Troitino free and before it was resolved he went on the run to London, where he was arrested the following year.

In October 2013, he was among scores of ETA members formally released under a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights.

But the Spanish courts demanded Britain send him back to Spain to answer further charges against him.

ETA is blamed for more than 800 deaths in a four-decade campaign of bombings and shootings for an independent homeland in northern Spain and southwestern France.

© 2015 AFP

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