Argentinian judge charges French-French-era Spanish minister with murder – .

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Argentinian judge charges French-French-era Spanish minister with murder – .


Local workers load a statue of former Spanish dictator Francisco Franco, the last remaining in Spain, into a truck after removing it from its location in Melilla, Spain on February 23, 2021.REUTERS / Jesus Blasco de Avellaneda

BARCELONA, October 16 (Reuters) – An Argentinian judge investigating cases related to the Franco dictatorship in Spain has indicted a former Spanish minister with four counts of homicide, according to court documents seen by Reuters on Saturday.

Judge Maria Servini of Cuba, sitting in Buenos Aires, rendered the ruling against Rodolfo Martin Villa, 87, Minister of the Interior between 1976 and 1979.

The judge wrote that she considered Martin Villa “the prima facie perpetrator criminally responsible for the crime of aggravated homicide, repeated at least four times, including Pedro María Martínez Ocio, Romualdo Barroso Chaparro, Francisco Aznar Clemente and Germán Rodríguez Saíz have been victims ”.

Martin Villa told Spanish newspaper ABC: “I am calm. I will appeal. “

Spain passed an amnesty law in 1977 that pardoned crimes committed by the Franco dictatorship.

Hundreds of Spaniards have tried to get around this problem by going to an Argentinian court, under the principle of universal justice, to try the crimes committed against them and their families during the 36 years of right-wing dictatorship of General Francisco Franco. .

Judge Servini wrote that Martin Villa played a key role in the repressive structures of the dictatorship, which continued in the years immediately following Franco’s death in 1975.

“This is excellent news for the victims, who have been claiming for many years,” said Máximo Castex, lawyer for relatives of the victims.

The judge ordered the detention of Martin Villa, who lives in Madrid, but said it was unlikely.

Fernando Goldaracena, the ex-minister’s lawyer, did not respond to requests for comment.

Reporting by Graham Keeley; Editing by Christina Fincher and Kevin Liffey

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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