10:21 p.m. Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Outrage in Peru over death squad decision
By FRANKLIN BRICENO
The Associated Press
LIMA, Peru — Peruvians are reacting with widespread anger to a Supreme Court ruling that could allow the imminent release of military death squad members who took part in notorious 1990s killings under the government of Alberto Fujimori.
In the 3-2 ruling, seven members of the so-called Colina death squad created under the auspices of then-spy chief Vladimiro Montesinos may now apply immediately for parole, legal experts say.
The court also overturned the aggravated murder conviction and 15-year sentence of Montesino's army intelligence chief, Alberto Pinto, for providing financial and logistical support to the Colina group.
Pinto was released from prison on Tuesday.
In its ruling Friday regarding 25 killings of which the Colina squad was convicted, including the slaying of an 8-year-old boy, the five-judge panel said they were not "crimes against humanity" but simple murders. It also said Pinto was only following orders.