Argentinean Interpol asks Spain to arrest 19 Franco-era officials

Argentinean Interpol has asked Spain to arrest and extradite 19 former officials accused of abuses during the military rule of General Franco (1939-75). One of these Franco-era officials is the father in law of Justice ex-minister, Alberto Ruiz Gallardón.


Matías Viotti

[cml_media_alt id='348']Spanish_Civil_War_-_Mass_grave_-_Estépar,_Burgos[/cml_media_alt]
Spanish civil war mass grave in Estépar (Burgos).

Argentinean Interpol has communicated to its Spanish counterpart to arrest and extradite 19 former officials [originally 20 but one of the accused ex-minister Antonio Barrera de Irimo, died recently] charged of abuses during the military rule of General Franco. They are accused of crimes against humanity.

The judge, María Servini de Cubría, asked the Interpol preventive arrest among others of father in law of Justice ex ministre, Alberto Ruiz Gallardón. He is accused of signing the order of execution for Salvador Puig Antich in 1974, Catalan anarchist militant and one of the last victims of the Spanish dictatorship.

Franco-era officials cannot be tried in Spain because of an amnesty law but the officials could be prosecuted in Argentina.

The families of alleged victims asked Argentina for help because it has an extradition treaty with Spain.

In April, Spain’s high court refused to extradite to Argentina a former policeman accused of torture.

The two most prominent suspects in Judge Servini’s investigation are Rodolfo Martin Villa, 79, who was Franco’s interior minister, and Jose Uteri Molina, 86, who was housing minister.

After Franco’s death in 1975, the amnesty agreement was seen as essential to avoid score-settling as the country moved towards democracy.

The United Nations has asked Spain to revoke the amnesty law but the Spanish authorities have so far refused.

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Scene showing the execution of Salvador Puig Antich in the film Salvador (2006).

[More on this news in the next Cosmopolita Scotland issue in December].

Autor: Jordi Albacete

I am an environmental journalist. My passion for the protection of human and environmental rights has been inspired by research led journalism. My ambition is to communicate and inspire people to make positive changes in the environment. Twitter @albacetejordi or Linkedin.

Periodista medioambiental. Mi pasión por la protección de los derechos humanos y medioambientales se ha forjado a través de la investigación periodística. Mi objetivo es comunicar e inspirar a la gente para hacer cambios positivos y proteger el medioambiente. Twitter @albacetejordi o Linkedin.

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