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Guatemalan court opens door to amnesty for Rios Montt

Guatemala City, Oct 23 (EFE).- Guatemala's Constitutional Court has opened the door to amnesty for former dictator Efrain Rios Montt on charges of genocide and crimes against humanity, a judicial spokesman told Efe Wednesday. The ruling was issued Tuesday, but has not been made public pending formal notification of the parties, the spokesman said. The decision suggests the case against the retired general be dropped on the basis of a amnesty proclaimed in 1986 by Guatemala's then-military regime, La Prensa Libre daily said Wednesday on its Web site.

Mexico captures man wanted in killing of Guatemalan police

By Mike McDonald GUATEMALA CITY (Reuters) - Mexican police arrested on Friday a suspected Guatemalan drug trafficker accused of leading the June slaughter of eight police officers in Guatemala's western highlands, authorities said. Eduardo Villatoro, alias "Guayo Cano," was arrested in the city of Tuxtla Gutierrez in Chiapas, Mexico on Friday morning at 5 a.m. local time, some 230 km (143 miles) from Guatemala's border, the Guatemalan government said.

Guatemalan wanted for cop killings nabbed in Mexico

Guatemala City, Oct 4 (EFE).- A reputed drug kingpin wanted in connection with the slaughter of nine Guatemalan police officers was apprehended in neighboring Mexico, Guatemala's President Otto Perez Molina said Friday. Eduardo Villatoro Cano was arrested in the wee hours in Tuxtla Gutierrez, capital of the southern Mexican state of Chiapas, the president told reporters. The fugitive was going under a false name, but Mexican police were able to identify him using photos and fingerprints, Perez Molina said.

Guatemala seeks freeze on Portillo's Europe accounts

A Guatemalan court has ordered the freezing of assets held by ex-president Alfonso Portillo in France, Switzerland and Luxembourg, the nation's top prosecutor said Monday. Attorney General Claudia Paz y Paz said Portillo, who was in power from 2000-2004 and is currently being held in the United States for money laundering, had frozen accounts totalling 2.8 million euros in those three countries. On May 24 Guatemala extradited Portillo to the United States to face charges of laundering $70 million.

Guatemala, Mexico agree on actions to fight poverty along border

Guatemala City, Jun 1 (EFE).- Guatemalan President Otto Perez Molina and Mexican counterpart Enrique Peña Nieto said they would launch joint actions "in the short term" to combat hunger in the border region and spur development for its more than five million inhabitants. During a working meeting at a Guatemala City hotel, the presidents and their top aides hammered out a long list of actions "aimed at expanding relations" between the two countries.

Guatemala high court confirms overturning of Rios Montt verdict

Guatemala City, May 28 (EFE).- The Guatemalan Constitutional Court on Tuesday upheld its May 20 decision overturning former dictator Efrain Rios Montt's conviction for genocide and crimes against humanity. The CC rejected four motions submitted by the Attorney General's Office and plaintiffs' lawyers, a judicial spokesman told reporters. Rios Montt, 86, was sentenced May 10 to 80 years in prison for the deaths of 1,771 Ixil Indians between March 1982 and August 1983 as part of a counter-insurgency campaign.

Guatemalan ex-president extradited to U.S. on money-laundering charges

By Mike McDonald GUATEMALA CITY (Reuters) - Former Guatemalan President Alfonso Portillo was extradited on Friday to the United States to face money-laundering charges, just days after former dictator Efrain Rios Montt's genocide conviction was overturned. A U.S. grand jury decided in 2009 that Portillo, who was in office from 2000 to 2004, should face charges that he laundered $70 million through U.S. banks.

Guatemala high court overturns ex-strongman's conviction

Guatemala City, May 21 (EFE).- Guatemala's Constitutional Court overturned former dictator Efrain Rios Montt's genocide conviction and ordered a partial retrial. Rios Montt was sentenced to 80 years in prison for the deaths of 1,771 Ixil Indians between March 1982 and August 1983 as part of a counter-insurgency campaign. By a vote of 3-2, the Constitutional Court threw out the verdict and the sentence - as well as the acquittal of another defendant - and ordered the trial court to repeat the segment of the process that took place between April 19 and May 10.

Guatemala's top court annuls Rios Montt genocide conviction

GUATEMALA CITY (Reuters) - Guatemala's highest court on Monday overturned a genocide conviction against former dictator Efrain Rios Montt and reset his trial back to when a dispute broke out a month ago over who should hear the case. Rios Montt was found guilty on May 10 of overseeing the killings by the armed forces of at least 1,771 members of the Maya Ixil population during his 1982-83 rule. He was sentenced to 80 years in prison. It was unclear when the trial might restart.

Guatemala government must apologize after Rios Montt verdict: judge

By Mike McDonald GUATEMALA CITY (Reuters) - A Guatemalan court ordered the government on Monday to apologize for atrocities committed against indigenous people in the country's civil war after former dictator Efrain Rios Montt was convicted of genocide and crimes against humanity. Judges sentenced Rios Montt to 80 years in prison on Friday after finding him responsible for deliberate killings by the armed forces of at least 1,771 members of the Maya Ixil population during his 1982-83 rule.
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