Argentina seeks Pinochet's extradition in 1974 murder
BUENOS AIRES -- (AFP) -- Argentina formally requested Friday the
Chilean former dictator Augusto Pinochet in connection with the 1974
assassination of a Chilean general in Buenos Aires, a prosecutor said.
``Federal Judge Juan José Galeano filed the request, and
also has asked Interpol
for [Pinochet's] preventive arrest so that he can be extradited,'' prosecutor Jorge
Alvarez Berlanda said.
Argentina wants to try Pinochet, five other officers and a civilian
involvement in the killing here of Gen. Carlos Prats of Chile. Prats and his family
had gone into exile in Argentina after the 1973 coup in which Pinochet rose to
Prats was Pinochet's predecessor as chief of the army in the administration
socialist president Salvador Allende.
After Allende's death in September 1973, during the coup led by
and his wife Sofía Cuthbert fled into exile in the Argentine capital. They were killed
there on Sept. 30, 1974, when a bomb planted under their car exploded.
Last May, Argentine Judge María Servini de Cubría
notified Pinochet that charges
had been filed against him following a four-year investigation into Prats' death.
That month, a former member of Pinochet's secret police who served
for his role in the car-bombing death of another former Allende associate admitted
he planted the bomb that killed Prats.
Secret-police agent Michael Townley was jailed in the United States
in 1979 for
planting the bomb that killed former Foreign Minister Orlando Letelier and his
secretary Ronnie Moffitt in the U.S. capital in September 1976. Townley was later
released and lives under an assumed identity in the United States.
Argentina is trying another former member of Chile's secret police,
Arancibía Clavel, who has been held since 1996, accused of participating in Prats'