Spain: Guatemalan official absolved in prisoner's executions

AP News
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Posted: Mar 15, 2017 12:56 PM
Spain: Guatemalan official absolved in prisoner's executions

MADRID (AP) — Former Guatemalan interior minister Carlos Vielmann has been absolved by a Spanish court in a high-profile case of summary executions of inmates a decade ago.

Vielmann, who has Spanish nationality, was facing up to 40 years in jail for the death of ten prisoners — three who fled a high-security jail in 2005, and seven others at another prison where security forces stormed to quell a mutiny a year later.

Two judges ruled that there was not enough evidence to determine Vielmann's responsibility in the deaths. A third judge disagreed, according to the sentence.

The outcome is a blow to rights organizations that had seen in the trial at Spain's National Court an opportunity to fight what they see as impunity by the rich in Guatemala.