Extradition bid for El Salvador colonel

AFP - [email protected]
Extradition bid for El Salvador colonel
Relatives of those disappeared during the civil war demand extradition of perpetrators at a protest in El Salvador, August, 2011. Photo: Jose Cabezas / AFP

The US Justice Department has asked a US court to approve the extradition to Spain of a former Salvadoran colonel accused of the 1989 murders of five Jesuit priests.


Inocente Montano Morales, 72, is currently serving a 21-month prison term in the United States for immigration fraud and perjury, but he is due to be released on April 16th, the Justice Department said in a statement.

Montano Morales served as El Salvador's deputy defense minister at the time of the assassinations of the Jesuit priests who were seeking an end to the nation's bloody civil war.

Six priests, their housekeeper and the housekeeper's 16-year-old daughter were gunned down in their residence on the campus of the Universidad Centroamericana in San Salvador.

Five of the priests were Spanish nationals, including university rector Ignacio Ellacuria.

Montano Morales has been indicted in Spain, along with 19 other former members of the Salvadoran military, of the murders of the Spanish nationals among the dead.

"The complaint alleges that he shared oversight responsibility over a government radio station that, days before the massacre, issued threats urging the murder of the Jesuit priests," the Justice Department said.

"The day before the murders, Montano Morales also allegedly participated in a series of meetings during which one of his fellow officers gave the order to kill the leader of the Jesuits and leave no witnesses," it said.

El Salvador's civil war raged from 1980 to 1991, and claimed the lives of an estimated 75,000 people.


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also