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Montevideo, May 26th 2024 - 02:51 UTC



Extradition of Mapuche leader to Chile granted, but appeals will ensue

Tuesday, August 1st 2023 - 10:21 UTC
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Jones-Huala was arrested in the town of El Bolsón earlier this year Jones-Huala was arrested in the town of El Bolsón earlier this year

A federal judge in Bariloche Monday ruled in favor of extraditing Mapuche Ancestral Resistance (RAM) leader Facundo Jones-Huala to Chile under the recommendation that the days he spent in detention in Argentina be counted as time served.

Jones-Huala was convicted on Dec. 21, 2018, by the Oral Criminal Court of Valdivia as the author of the arson of an inhabited house in addition to the illegal possession of a weapon. In early 2022, he was granted parole, but when the Chilean Supreme Court overturned that decision he went on the run. He remained a fugitive until he was arrested in the town of El Bolsón earlier this year after being on an Interpol red alert.

Jones-Huala's legal team will appeal Monday's ruling, it was reported. The case is expected to reach the Supreme Court in Buenos Aires.

The upper court may “annul the trial if it considers that it is unjust that we have not been allowed to present evidence, or it can request that a new hearing be held in order to do so,” defense lawyer Eduardo Soares explained. He represents Jones-Huala together with Gustavo Franquet.

In the days prior to the beginning of the extradition trial, the lawyer had assured that “our hands and feet were tied” when Judge Gustavo Villanueva “prevented us from presenting evidence, [thus] violating the right of defense in trial”.

Villanueva decided to reject all the evidence submitted by the defense and to accept all the evidence brought by Prosecutor Cándida Echepare's team.

“With this decision, rarely seen in the history of trials, we are totally prevented from being able to prove that several of the grounds for which the extradition should not prosper are configured.”

Categories: Politics, Argentina, Chile.

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