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It had been 4:30 A.M. upon Friday, January 5, 1996. The Particular Washington Submit carrier was
generating his rounds down Irving Street inside Brookland, the suburb associated with Washington,
D.C. Phil Mayo, the bus driver, had gotten up several minutes earlier, and the particular man recalls
hearing the particular newspaper hit his pavement--the reassuring learn to the regular day.
Mayo walked up to his window. Outside, the sun had even now not necessarily risen, and
furthermore the temperature had been falling. The Actual street has been empty. He glanced
throughout the street at the yellow Victorian residence owned by his neighbors, the actual
Pertierras, noticing their freshly leased Acura in the driveway. a short while later, Mayo was just
opening his front door to depart regarding work whenever a tremendous explosion ripped via the
particular neighborhood. Across the street, fifteen-foot-high flames had been engulfing the
particular Pertierras' car.
Jose Pertierra didn't listen to the explosion. He always slept soundly. but he had been awakened by
simply his Guatemalan wife, America, shaking him along with shouting, terrified, "Jose! Jose, the
bomb!" The Particular forty-four-year-old Cuban-American lawyer leapt out of bed along with ran
downstairs, pondering his house was in fire. "Then I saw massive flames coming from the yard," he
says. "It had been incredible. the flames were escalating and incredibly hot. My auto was somewhere
inside the center of them."
At that moment, two images flashed through Pertierra's mind. The first had been involving Orlando
Letelier, the former left-leaning Chilean foreign minister who died within 1976 when his automobile
has been blown up at Sheridan Circle, in downtown Washington. Agents working for Chile's
ultrarightist military had planted your bomb. Your second was in the Guatemalan army.
Pertierra had good reason in order to suspect your Guatemalan military. He represents Jennifer
Harbury, your Harvard-educated lawyer whose Guatemalan guerrilla husband, Efrain Bamaca, was
killed from the army, allegedly below orders from the paid CIA informant. Since 1992, Harbury has
been waging a relentless, high-profile campaign, including 2 hunger strikes, to learn the facts about
the girl husband's capture, torture, and murder.
"The only controversial case I get is Harbury's," says Pertierra, an immigration lawyer. "And
everybody connected together with Jennifer has felt threatened."
Pertierra known as 911. within a few minutes, fire engines arrived along with doused the flames.
Your car would be a total write-off. Hefty water damage made it impossible, authorities said, to
determine what kind of incendiary device ended up being used. Yet FBI investigators concluded that
the fire bomb contained an "accelerant" for you to augment the particular explosion. the bomb
"appeared never to happen for you to be the job of children as well as vandals," said FBI
spokeswoman Susan Lloyd. "They're pros," concluded an additional agent.
The Guatemalan army reacted swiftly towards the fire-bombing. "We believe that the bombing ended
up being done through the lawyer himself and Jennifer Harbury, his client. It was a self-attack,
intended to obtain publicity," asserted military spokesman Colonel Julio Caal.
Four times after the bombing, Pertierra was in his downtown Washington office once the fax device
suddenly came alive. the message had been marked CONFIDENTIAL. It contained the names
associated with "two possible suspects": Colonel Jose Luis Fernandez Ligorria and Federico Baechli.
The fax has been signed by a high-ranking Guatemalan official who continues to always be able to be
critical involving human-rights abuses. Whenever inspired to elaborate upon his fax, he said: "Who
otherwise inside D.C. dislikes Harbury thus intensely? Ligorria and also Baechli are very close. they
perform together. These People talk about things. These People reveal the identical collection
involving thinking. Baechli is a mechanic and understands with regards to cars. I can't see other
people carrying out it."
Ligorria along with Baechli are an odd couple. Fred Baechli, a new naturalized U.S. citizen that left
Guatemala thirty years ago, owns an auto-repair shop along with used-car showroom about East-
West Highway throughout Silver Spring, Maryland. He lately labored as a Washington lobbyist for
the Guatemalan army and also government. His auto showroom serves because the headquarters
with regard to The Particular Fraternity, the Guatemalan social club whose members are generally
staunch supporters in the military. "I let all of them have your shop to get their particular meetings,"
Baechli advised us. "I help these to in most way."
Fernandez Ligorria, former chief involving Guatemala's notorious intelligence branch, G-2, ended up
being accused inside Guatemala within early 1995 regarding involvement throughout cocaine
trafficking along with a car-theft ring. He also may be connected to death-squad activities. Ligorria
features denied all of the charges, along with criminal proceedings against him throughout
Guatemala were swiftly dismissed. Ligorria now attends the particular Inter-American defense
college at Fort McNair, in Washington, D.C. He refused numerous requests to become interviewed
for this article.
Baechli denies getting involved inside the bombing regarding Pertierra's car. "I would love to find
out that did it," Baechli says, laughing. "We Guatemalans tend to be not that dumb." He adds he
thinks the actual bombing ended up being done in a "sloppy" manner. Similar To your Guatemalan
military, Baechli shows that activists opposed towards the Guatemalan government may well possess
completed it regarding "publicity."
Baechli will not hide his distaste with regard to Harbury and also Pertierra. "She's detrimental the
nation of Guatemala. Folks don't take care of Harbury, nor your ex lawyer. Therefore I do not really
know that do it, however, if at any time I learn I'll give that a person simply call."
Neither Baechli nor Ligorria has been charged within connection with the bombing. The Particular
FBI has been investigating it, and Baechli confirms that the FBI offers spoken in order to him about
it. Nevertheless no suspects happen to be named with no arrests made. The Particular
Ligorria/Baechli trail, however, reveals evidence of your marketing campaign regarding low-
intensity warfare becoming waged through Guatemala's military here throughout Washington, D.C.
This particular campaign is actually targeted at silencing the actual military's critics, too as winning
your hearts and also minds of U.S. government officials and Guatemalans living in the Washington
The Pertierra vehicle bombing is not an isolated incident. The Actual Guatemalan military continues
in order to be sending G-2 hit-squads to the Usa to intimidate or eliminate its opponents, in
accordance with former Guatemalan intelligence and also military officers, human-rights activists,
and a former Drug Enforcement Agency agent. "Absolutely, with out a doubt, they function within
the U.S.," says Celerino Castillo, that worked as a DEA agent based in the U.S. embassy inside
Guatemala through 1985 for you to 1990.
Castillo says he 1st became conscious of these G-2 operations when within regarding 1987 a CIA
agent inside the embassy "asked if I knew anyone inside the Palace from whom they might get five
blank Guatemalan passports. He informed me these folks were sending several G-2 guys to always
be able to California for you to go hit somebody through G-2 who had been seeking political asylum
or has been testifying," Castillo says. He says certainly 1 of his informants got the blank passports.
Any hit team, built with false identities, ended up being dispatched. Castillo says he later on heard
someone had been "bumped off."
Castillo says that CIA officials throughout Guatemala "signed off on" as well as "financed" this
operation. "I strongly think that for many years that they happen to be associated with coming more
than towards the States and also killing people then going back for you to Guatemala," says Castillo.
Danilo Rodriguez, any former guerrilla whom is currently legal counsel as well as political analyst
within Guatemala, additionally says that the G-2 "has completed this type of operation" within the
united States as well as Mexico. "G-2 will not have access to agents permanently situated in various
other countries. Rather they've informants who perform the groundwork. Then they outline
operational teams for you to swiftly carry out certain missions and also go again to Guatemala,"
In interviews, a couple of former G-2 members and the couple former soldiers also mentioned they
are completely aware G-2 will be running operations inside the actual United States. "Of course they
will are. Whenever they would just like to get rid of someone, they really do it. they possess
international operations," says a former G-2 officer now surviving in Washington, D.C. in addition,
these sources along with human-rights activists say G-2 agents along with informants have
frequently been seen using photographs involving protesters from demonstrations throughout
In early April 1995, a couple of FBI agents called Jennifer Harbury from the girl house within Texas
and, although it had been close to midnight, insisted they urgently necessary to observe her.
Harbury says the agents informed her they'd learned that "a team associated with [Guatemalan
military] officials" had paid out a person "to assassinate the particular `gringa' in the hunger
strikes." the FBI sent guards in order to Harbury's house, yet no arrests had been actually made.
In late 1994, Harbury's identify appeared from the the majority of notable of your death listing of
eight folks the Guatemalan Anti-Communist Unit dispersed for the press throughout Guatemala.
Pertierra says he recently received a reliable suggestion in which he, too, has been targeted with a
In early 1995, Peter Kerndt received any death threat at his office, 1 day right after speaking with a
public event in Los Angeles together with Harbury. Your caller warned, "Peter, I'm likely to kill you."
Kerndt's sister, Ann Kerndt, together with Bill Woods, a new Mary-knoll priest, and four additional
Americans had been killed in a suspicious plane crash in Guatemala throughout 1976. the Kerndt
family members along with human-rights teams believe your Guatemalan military shot along the
Since February 1995, the actual Guatemalan Human rights Commission throughout Washington
features received anonymous telephone and e-mail threats. 1 referred for you to as Harbury "a
communist whore" and an additional accused commission members involving getting "idiot, lying,
communist bastards." An e-mail message received February 11, 1996, declared, throughout Spanish,
"Thank God for that Guatemalan army ... the least corrupt institution throughout Guatemala." It
denounced your commission pertaining to its "retrograde ideas."
Commission staff member Sister Dianna Ortiz, the survivor involving rape along with torture by
simply Guatemalan safety forces (see Web Page 27), has received numerous phone threats since
returning through Guatemala within 1989. A Amount Of threatening calls were produced to your ex
Washington home over the past year. A Pair Of days just before the girl began the woman's vigil
facing your White House, she located a new package addressed to end up being able to her lying in
her yard. That had been filled up with shit. like Harbury, Ortiz have been demanding that the Clinton
Administration release most details it's got on her case along with investigate the evidence that an
American ended up being concerned in the girl own abduction.
Last July, the particular Commission's office, found inside a home throughout Brookland, ended up
being broken into beneath peculiar circumstances. The Actual iron security door had been ripped
coming from its hinges, apparently after becoming hooked as much as a new truck. the thieves took
just a pair of telephones plus an answering device containing an update on Harbury's case; they
didn't bother to adopt the cameras, computers, or money also inside easy reach.
During this identical period, the actual Guatemalan prosecutor inside Harbury's case, Julio Arango,
found Washington to take any deposition in the key witness, a new former Guatemalan guerrilla
prisoner involving war, which had seen Bamaca during his captivity and also had was in any position
to escape. With his downtown hotel, the particular prosecutor received an anonymous phone contact
which sounded being a bomb ticking. Again in Guatemala, he as well as loved ones received a range
of similar threatening calls. His car has been followed about a variety of occasions, and the
particular man was shot at although doing function in his workplace in the Public Ministry. The
Particular bullet lodged within his desk. several weeks later, he resigned in the Harbury case.
At 1:30 A.M. upon January 6, 1996, the night following Pertierra's auto was firebombed, a go has
been fired directly into Harbury's Washington residence, lodging just 4 feet coming from your ex
housemate's bed. Harbury is at Guatemala in the time, wanting to enter an army base inside an
effort for you to find the woman's husband's body. no one ended up being injured on this shooting,
and both the particular FBI as well as residents of the particular home remain uncertain whether it
absolutely was merely a new neighborhood gang shoot-out or even a message sent through the
Gilson Urizar, the former Guatemalan policeman now inside exile within Washington, told your FBI
that upon 4 separate occasions he may be followed, and when an American who spoke perfect
Spanish took his photo. "I'm absolutely certain a minimum of among your men has been G-2. He had
the particular typical military-style haircut and carried the woven bag used by G-2 for you to hide
their own machine guns."
Commission members say other Guatemalan exiles get received threats, yet happen for you to be as
well reluctant to statement these incidents towards the authorities or possibly the press.
In February, Congresswoman Connie Morella regarding Maryland wrote Attorney General Janet
Reno stating the woman's concern about these incidents. "They strongly suggest that these attacks
could are already instigated coming from outside involving the united States simply by Guatemalan
citizens, and also thereby constitute acts associated with international terrorism." Morella urged
your Administration in order to "make distinct to Guatemalan officials that the Usa is not really likely
to tolerate threats or perhaps attacks, end up being that they official, unofficial, or extra-official,
against its citizens."
In your ex letter, Congresswoman Morella expressed an additional concern: "There tend to be
several prominent Guatemalan safety and also intelligence officials involving questionable status
presently inside the united States serving inside diplomatic posts or inter-American organizations."
Morella extra which "it cannot be ruled out that they might possess played a few role during these
Guatemala is the scene with the Western Hemisphere's longest-running and bloodiest civil war. This
turned right directly into a killing field subsequent the CIA-engineered coup within 1954 which
toppled President Jacobo Arbenz, the democratically elected social reformer.
In the ensuing four decades, because the army battled guerrillas, Guatemalan civilians--some 55 %
associated with whom tend to be involving Mayan Indian descent--have paid out the particular price.
An estimated 200,000 civilians are already killed as well as disappeared, mostly in the hands in the
army or military-linked death squads. more when compared with 1 million Guatemalans are already
instructed to flee their homes, half a million involving whom have got become refugees in southern
During the last decade, your U.S. government did difficult to attempt to restore a new facade
involving democracy through elections plus an often-shaky Guatemalan civilian government. Peace
talks involving the Guatemalan government and in addition the leftwing guerrilla movement, URNG,
right after being stalled for 5 years, have not too long ago proven signs and also signs of forward
movement. However energy is constantly about the reside using the army, human-rights abuses
remain rampant, with no official provides actually been prosecuted with regard to past crimes.
A February 1996 Amnesty International document documents "a disturbing pattern involving human-
rights violations within Guatemala. Extrajudicial executions, `disappearances,' torture, death
threats, harassment, and intimidation persist. The Particular violations have been directed at many
sectors of society" as well as "those responsible ... always reap your advantages of practically total
impunity," Amnesty reports.
With increasing frequency, Guatemalans have been seeking safety and economic security within the
United States, also as Mexico. Guatemala's exiles are generally victims of each war and poverty.
Your united Nations estimates 80 percent regarding Guatemalans reside in extreme poverty and 2
out of five youngsters die before reaching the particular chronilogical age group of five. Numerous
flee because these people are already threatened or tortured, or perhaps had family members killed
or even disappeared.
There are generally an estimated 100,000 Guatemalans in the Washington, D.C., area. Additional
cities--Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, as well as New York--have more, however Washington may be
the hub involving Guatemalan political activities within the United States.
"Here in Washington are usually exactly the particular same divisions we now have throughout
Guatemala, the same problems, and the exact same dangers," says Gilson Urizar, any former soldier
and policeman whom says his "official duties" included kidnappings and also robberies in Guatemala.
Urizar says he received death threats following he described these criminal activities within the
With aid in the Guatemalan Human Legal Rights Commission, Urizar fled to the United States,
nevertheless he says he continues to become followed and also harassed within Washington. The
Particular Commission, which monitors and also publicizes the actual human-rights circumstance in
Guatemala, continues to become able to be deeply associated with supporting Harbury. Its members
have been harassed, as have got members involving Coalition "Missing," which shares office space
throughout Brookland using the Commission. The Actual Coalition represents U.S. citizens as well as
their people who were victims associated with military along with police violence within Guatemala.
Scattered about Capitol Hill and DuPont Circle certainly are a dozen or consequently additional tiny
solidarity teams involved with Congressional lobbying, publicizing human-rights violations, as well
as waging legal actions. These kind of organizations are run by simply Guatemalan exiles and
Americans, many of whom furthermore received death threats although working in Guatemala along
with had been made to flee.
The Guatemala Committee in the Washington Area, for instance, provides staged protests facing the
Guatemalan embassy as well as the White house along with organized final year's productive
boycotts of Starbucks and also The Actual Gap, also as additional U.S. companies arrested for
maintaining substandard conditions inside their Guatemalan plants. several protesters, including
David Bryden and John Friedrich, say his or her actions are already observed and also photographed
through Guatemalans inside dark suits as well as sunglasses whom these people suspect work with
regard to G-2.
Besides these advocacy groups, you may find social-service organizations dedicated to helping
Guatemalans obtain work, health care, English lessons, housing, and also legal status. one in the
largest is CASA involving Maryland, which operates out of the Takoma Park church and a regional
house, helping Exclusive Homes Capitol Hill DC immigrants discover employment.
"Now oahu is the time of your Guatemalans. The Particular period of your Salvadorans is over," says
Carlos Gutierrez, director of CASA's employment services. He explains which since the actual 1990
Salvadoran peace accord, many Salvadorans have got gone home. Guatemalans now account for
most of your area's Latin-American immigrant community.
"Our civil war continues to propel visitors to leave," says Gutierrez, a new former union organizer
which fled Guatemala inside 1992 right after narrowly escaping an attempt upon his life. most in the
Guatemalans he assists "don't want to chat by what they've lived through," he says, both simply
because they want to forget and since they will still concern reprisals from Guatemalans linked to
Pitted against the human-rights and also social-service organizations is actually a network regarding
Guatemalan immigrants aligned using the army. over the past year, that they happen to be able to
be loosely grouped within Your Fraternity. 1 in the oldest and largest Guatemalan organizations in
the Washington area, Your Fraternity meets every Wednesday night within Fred Baechli's auto
Officials of The Particular Fraternity claim it really is purely an apolitical, social club, nevertheless
the underlying mission associated with Your Fraternity's leadership is to construct assistance for
that Guatemalan military. a year ago the Fraternity, collectively with almost all the military portion
involving the Guatemalan embassy and in addition the Protection Ministry in Guatemala, began any
campaign to become able to counter your avalanche associated with negative publicity being
generated simply by Jennifer Harbury.
On March 23, 1995, Democratic Congressman Robert Torricelli involving new Jersey stepped just
before any bank regarding microphones as well as dropped any bombshell. Your Congressman,
who's about the house Intelligence Committee, revealed he had info in which Harbury's husband,
guerrilla commander Bamaca, have been murdered about the orders regarding Colonel Julio Alpirez,
any Guatemalan officer on the CIA's payroll. Alpirez has also been implicated within the 1990
murder regarding Michael Devine, an American innkeeper inside Guatemala. Alpirez denies
involvement inside both crimes.
As Torricelli spoke, Harbury stood nearby, holding an eight-by-ten black-and-white photo associated
with the woman's dead husband. The Girl had just ended the twelve-day hunger strike in front of the
particular White House, demanding the Clinton Administration tell what it knew about the woman's
husband's disappearance. Torricelli's revelations were the first official confirmation Harbury had
that your ex husband was, for certain, dead. The Lady wept quietly.
"At least now I know they are no more making them suffer," she advised the particular press. "But I
won't rest until these people supply our bodies involving my husband." The Girl hasn't. over the past
yr Harbury features devoted herself to always be able to trying to locate as well as exhume her
husband's remains. The Actual Guatemalan military offers sought to check the girl every move.
The Torricelli press conference had been yet another black eye pertaining to each the particular
Guatemalan military and the CIA. Inside the actual palace throughout Guatemala City, Fred Baechli,
which was in city for a graduation ceremony where among his military buddies has been made a
general, huddled with Protection Minister Mario Renee Enriquez. Baechli, any large, gray-haired
man associated with Swiss-German descent whose loved ones owns plantations and properties
throughout Guatemala, boasts of his long as well as near associations with just about all the
country's top military and political elite. Baechli says he travels frequently to Guatemala about
business, and also diplomatic sources say he maintains near links with the military portion involving
the embassy within Washington.
"People tend to be sick along with fed up with Harbury throughout Guatemala," Baechli mentioned
inside a current interview at his Potomac home. Sitting throughout his spacious family area full of
huge Chinese porcelain vases, mounted ivory tusks, carved wooden figurines, as well as other objets
d'art, Baechli lost his temper as he spoke of Harbury. "She's been carrying out incredibly large
damage within Guatemala. I believe the lady exceeds the rights an individual should have
throughout another country. And Also folks which I socialize together with within Guatemala, they're
fed on best of her."
Baechli contends in which "a lot of organizations need to destroy Guatemala's credibility as well as
image, especially the relation using the U.S. Guatemala is actually being treated very unfairly,"
adding he desired to lend a new hand to demonstrate that will "the civilians also since the military
are already changing drastically inside the previous couple of years."
Down within Guatemala inside March 1995, Baechli,
collectively with Guatemala's leading military
leaders, mapped out the two-pronged program to
counter the negative publicity. Prong one had been
hiring lobbyists in order to polish your Guatemalan
military's image about Capitol Hill. Another ended up
being uniting the actual Guatemalan neighborhood
along with quelling dissent in Washington.
On April 7, 1995, Guatemala's protection minister,
Mario Renee Enriquez, signed any $540,000 contract
using among Baechli's buddies, D.C. lobbyist Robert Thompson's More Than your subsequent a
number of months, Thompson's team--which included Baechli himself, who had been registered as
an overseas agent and received $10,000 a month--wined as well as dined important Congressional
and Clinton Administration contracts. The Actual lobbyists furthermore produced any twenty-fou-
-page "white paper" attempting to burnish the actual army's human-rights record.
Baechli says Colonel Fernandez Ligorria "stopped by" when he and additionally the top military
leaders had been signing the actual lobbying contract. another part of the actual lobbying team
remembers Ligorria's active involvement. "When we achieved the particular minister associated with
defense and additionally the president in Guatemala, Ligorria had been there. We planned your
white paper. He was a extremely active participant." This specific source adds in which Ligorria
"came to several of the particular once a week meetings up here" in Washington, D.C., which
includes 1 upon Capitol Hill.
The Guatemalan embassy, along with members associated with Your Fraternity and other
organizations, furthermore chose to launch a new weekly radio program, "Voice regarding
Guatemala," that finally went on the air last November. The Actual embassy's military section
provides information reviews about Guatemala, that include the "social works" carried out through
the army, and also the Guatemalan military additionally reportedly pays for that radio program.
For a long time it has been widespread practice regarding effective Latin-American politicians as
well as military brass that fall via favor or are usually accused associated with human-rights abuses
or another crimes for you to receive overseas posts so as to get these people out of their particular
country as well as keep these people quiet. It's known as "the golden exile." Diplomatic and also
human-rights resources say the State Department provides routinely cooperated by simply issuing
visas in order that embarrassing individuals can be tucked away inside embassies, the Organization
regarding American States, Inter-American Development Bank, the world Bank, and also the
International Monetary Fund, also since the United Nations.
Last July, Colonel Jose Fernandez Ligorria won his golden exile. He received a new scholarship for
you to go to an elite program at the Inter-American defense College, based at Fort McNair
throughout Washington, D.C. The Actual university will be part of the OAS, however the military
portion of the Guatemalan embassy arranged Ligorria's posting. Your all-expenses-paid course
consists of trips to always be able to Latin America along with around the United States, also as
lectures upon hemispheric security, economic and also military cooperation, philosophy and also
doctrine, as well as human rights.
At the actual time, Ligorria has been virtually mysterious within Washington, nevertheless more
than the actual prior year, he had received mountains of negative press within Guatemala.
In late March 1995, when Torricelli fingered Colonel Alpirez as both your CIA agent and additionally
the architect regarding Bamaca's as well as Devine's murders, Alpirez's buddy as well as colleague
Ligorria was currently in deep trouble.
Attorney Danilo Rodriguez and human-rights activist Jorge Recinos accused him associated with
directing a new drug-trafficking ring, dealing in stolen cars, as well as heading the death squad,
almost all during his tenure as chief regarding G-2.
During the actual late 1960s, Ligorria, Alpirez, as well as embassy military attache Roberto Letona
Hora had studied together in the Polytechnic School, Guatemala's elite military academy. two
decades later, within 1989, Ligorria and also Alpirez received scholarship grants to consider an
advanced general staff and also command program in the College of the Americas from Fort
In the particular early 1980s, both officers took part within the military's infamous "scorched-earth"
campaign against Indian villages by which tens regarding 1000s of peasants were killed. Any
defense Department document, lately released for the Washington-based National Safety Archive,
praises Alpirez as "excellent only with that assignment" regarding "eliminating insurgents and also
insurgent sympathizers." According to Rodriguez, who was obviously a guerrilla fighting contrary to
the military, Ligorria took part in massacres associated with civilian communities within the
northeast Ixcan region.
In 1992, Ligorria was named 2nd in cost of the National Police, a new place he allegedly used to
organize the car-theft ring.
In early 1995, Recinos and Rodriguez visited court throughout Guatemala to accuse Ligorria
involving drug trafficking along with auto smuggling.
The charges played huge inside the Guatemalan press, as well as Ligorria denied everything. He
known as around the U.S. embassy, "a neutral body, to analyze me." Along With he warned those
who have been spreading "falsehoods" which however "exert all associated with my rights" against
The charges were rapidly trashed regarding court following the intervention with the military's
lawyer, Julio Citron. (Citron had been the same lawyer that for months have been blocking Harbury's
attempt to gain usage of any military base exactly where she believes the woman's husband is
So, instead of likely to jail, Ligorria discovered himself about a jet to Washington.
Ligorria's human-rights record has been not, apparently, associated with major concern to the State
Department. "The embassy ended up being mindful of your allegations against him, consequently a
thorough background check was carried out and the man is discovered to be qualified to acquire a
visa," says Mary Granfield, the particular Guatemala desk officer throughout Washington.
Rodriguez as well as Recinos were shocked that Ligorria received a new U.S. visa. Starting inside
1993, these people met 10 times with embassy officials, which includes Ambassador Marilyn
MacAfee, to offer details as well as documents regarding Ligorria's human-rights violations along
with criminal activities, these people say. "It seems that Ligorria has energy and excellent relations
with the embassy and also had collaborated using these within the past," says Rodriguez.
A State Department official familiar using the subject confirmed the embassy throughout Guatemala
had "met or spoken about numerous occasions" along with Rodriguez along with Recinos.
Nevertheless he said which although "Colonel Fernandez Ligorria's identify may be linked publicly
for you to alleged criminal exercise or perhaps human-rights abuses," he was still being "found
qualified regarding issuance of the visa."
Coalition "Missing" has demanded that the U.S. government cancel your visas regarding Ligorria
and numerous some other high-ranking military officers in Washington whom are already accused
regarding human-rights violations. Ligorria, regarding his part, will be nearing the finish involving
his program and it is scheduled to return in order to Guatemala in July. Human-rights activists
throughout Guatemala tend to be uncertain they need him back.
Meanwhile, Pertierra and his awesome wife, America, could will zero longer sleep soundly from
night. "We get up a lot," Pertierra says. "Any noise that we listen to makes us go for the window. And
Also each along with every morning at 4:30, in the duration of the bomb, we wake so we can not
The FBI nevertheless has a team working around the case. and Pertierra says he understands he's
"lucky." "In Guatemala you will find a big number of people who don't have got one to protect them
coming from their own government."
COPYRIGHT 1996 The Particular Progressive, Inc.
No portion informed may be reproduced with out the express published permission from your
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