Chicago Tribune
March 13, 1999


                   By Teresa Puente
                   Tribune Staff Writer
                   A university professor was found guilty Friday of four charges in the 1992 bombing
                   of a military recruiting center on Chicago's Northwest Side.

                   Jose Solis Jordan, 46, a former assistant professor at DePaul University and most
                   recently with the University of Puerto Rico, was convicted by a jury of conspiracy,
                   damage and attempted damage to government property and possession of
                   illegal explosives.

                   Solis, who had been free on bond, was taken into custody after the verdict was
                   announced. Sentencing was set for July 7, and he could face a sentence of about 6
                   years, prosecutors said.

                   Solis has denied any role in the bombing and said he was charged to discredit
                   supporters of the Puerto Rican independence movement. During the trial,
                   he disputed the testimony of three FBI agents that he confessed to them after his
                   arrest in November 1997 and testimony by eight agents that he never asked to see an

                   "The jury in the end credited the testimony of numerous FBI agents," said Assistant
                   U.S. Atty. Jonathan Bunge, who prosecuted the case with Assistant U.S.
                   Atty. Virginia Kendall. "It sends a message that each of us is entitled to speak his mind
                   and hold his or her own political beliefs, but that no one is entitled to advance their
                   political beliefs through terror or through an act that could cause pain to others."

                   Dressed in a tweed jacket and khaki pants, Solis remained composed as the verdict
                   was read, but his wife and sister were overcome with emotion. During his
                   testimony, Solis, an avid supporter of Puerto Rican independence, defended the
                   right of a "colonized people" to armed struggle. But he said that did not make him
                   a "terrorist."

                   "I will continue to struggle whether it be from behind a desk at the University of
                   Puerto Rico or at home with my family, or whether it be from behind prison bars,"
                   Solis said before the jury came back with the verdict. "I am a free man. They can't
                   take that away from me."

                   The case had been closely watched in the Puerto Rican community, where the political
                   status and future of the island has long been debated. Almost every day of the
                   two-week trial, the courtroom was packed with Solis' supporters.

                   Defense attorney Jed Stone said he plans to appeal.

                   "The struggle for self-determination in Puerto Rico will go on. Dr. Solis today
                   became another victim of that struggle," said Stone, who defended Solis with Linda
                   Backiel. "He will use this as an opportunity to educate."