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Peruvian official slams Chile's Fujimori verdict
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09:51, July 16, 2007

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A Peruvian official on Sunday slammed a Chilean verdict barring the extradition of former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori, calling it "a shame" of Chile's judicial power.

"The verdict is a shame, it is very strange and it undoubtedly cannot compromise all of Chile's judicial power, which we consider autonomous," Peru's Extradition Unit Chief Omar Chehade told a Chilean website.

Chilean Judge Orlando Alvarez on Wednesday rejected Peru's extradition request, saying Peruvian prosecutors had failed to prove Fujimori's involvement in death squads and corruption during his presidency.

Chehade said Peruvian officials were very upset by the court ruling.

"Judicially speaking, it is a weak verdict, but we mainly feel it is a slanted and absolutely partial decision favoring Fujimori, " Chahade said.

On Thursday, Peru's government quickly filed an appeal to Chile's Supreme Court against the Alvarez verdict. The fate of Fujimori is now in the hands of five Chilean judges who have three months to decide whether he should face trial in Peru for the alleged crimes.

"We will probably travel to Santiago, whenever Peru's Executive power decides it is the proper time to talk with the supreme judges, the five who are going to resolve the extradition process, " Chehade said.

"We can win in the end. We have to be able to explain to the Chilean judges that Alvarez has acted against reason," Chehade said.

Fujimori, 68, fled to Japan in 2000 after his government collapsed amid corruption scandals.

Peru said it has proved that Fujimori committed bribery, misused government funds and sanctioned 25 death-squad killings during his decade-long rule that ended in 2000.

The former president arrived unexpectedly in Chile in November 2005 on a private flight from Japan. He now remains under house arrest in the Chicureao neighborhood on the outskirts of Chile's capital Santiago.

Source: Xinhua

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