Latin America

Chile seeks extradition of ex-guerilla

The Chilean government says it will press France to extradite a former guerrilla who was arrested in Paris on Thursday after 22 years on the run.

Ricardo Palma Salamanca was convicted of killing Jaime Guzmán, a right-wing senator and a lawyer, in 1991, in an ambush on his car.

He then escaped from a high-security prison by helicopter.

He is thought to have been living in Mexico before going to Cuba and then France.

Palma Salamanca was a member of the Patriotic Front of Manuel Rodriguez (FPMR), a group that fought against the military government of General Augusto Pinochet.

Four years after being imprisoned for the Guzmán murder and on other charges, Palma Salamanca escaped from a high-security prison in Santiago, Chile's capital city, in a helicopter.

The pilot lowered down an armoured cage, into which Palma Salamanca and several others jumped and made their escape.

After evading capture for 22 years, he was arrested on a street in Paris on Thursday and has been ordered to present himself at a police station every day.

Chilean judicial official Mario Carroza has said he hopes Palma Salamanca's extradition will be approved "immediately" so the convicted man can return to complete his life sentence, but it is understood that France will examine the request next month.

Foreign Minister Heraldo Muñoz said the Chilean government had contracted a "very prestigious" lawyer for the case.

Original Article

BBC

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