5 Guatemalan ex-officers to be tried for disappearance, rape

AP News
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Posted: Mar 02, 2017 7:46 PM
5 Guatemalan ex-officers to be tried for disappearance, rape

GUATEMALA CITY (AP) — Five former Guatemalan army officers will face trial charged with the disappearance of a 14-year-old boy and the rape of his sister during the country's civil war.

Prosecutors say the 21-year-old woman was kidnapped in 1981 and taken to a military installation where she was tortured and sexually assaulted. She escaped eight days later.

The next day soldiers in civilian clothes went to her parents' home. She wasn't there so they took her brother, who was never heard from again.

A judge on Thursday ordered the trial to determine the defendants' responsibility.

Retired officer Hugo Ramiro Zaldana Rojas is one of the accused. He denied the allegations, calling them "revenge from the (political) left."

The United Nations says about 250,000 people were killed or disappeared during Guatemala's 1960-1996 civil war.