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Chile court sentences former general for Pinochet-era rights abuses

[JURIST] A Chilean court Thursday sentenced a retired general to 15 years in prison for his role in the 1974 disappearance of a political dissident. General Manuel Contreras [TrialWatch profile], the secret police chief under former dictator Augusto Pinochet [JURIST news archive], is already serving a cumulative prison sentence of 57 years for several other convictions. AP has more.

In January, a Chilean appeals court sentenced [JURIST report] Contreras to 10 years in prison for his role in the kidnapping of seven neighborhood leaders from La Legua in December 1973. In November 2007, Chile's Supreme Court affirmed seven convictions and overturned one [JURIST report] in cases involving murders committed by state agents during Pinochet's 1973-90 regime. The court based that decision on the Geneva Conventions [ICRC materials], finding that Chile was in a state of internal armed conflict when the murders occurred.

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