Saturday, 13 December 2008

Peru Round-Up

A good Reuters piece on Shining Path [h/t Otto] and their move from "political struggle" into the organised crime business.
Antenor Rosas, director of Peru's counterterrorism police, said the Shining Path was moving increasingly into more profitable parts of the drug trade in the world's No. 2 coca grower, including cultivation and production. In an interview with Reuters, Rosas said the Shining Path's growing involvement in the cocaine trade had allowed it to stockpile weapons and hire recruits. [...] "They've stopped believing in their ideology. They've left it aside and are more motivated by economics," Rosas said.

Shining Path expands role in coca trade

There seems to be some confusion about whether a new law allowing foreigners convicted of crimes in Peru to serve their sentences back home will apply to jailed US citizen Lori Berenson. The American, found guilty of being a MRTA guerrilla, has recently married in prison and is said to be pregnant. Peru's justice minister is firm that she will not benefit from the new law:
“The law is neither retroactive, nor does it apply to terrorists,” [...]

But, according to the president of Congress’ Justice Commission, Juan Carlos Eguren, Berenson stands to benefit from the law, just like any other foreigner, no matter what the crime committed.

“We didn’t think about the Berenson case,” said Eguren. “But, in principle, yes, she could benefit from the law… there are no particular dispositions because laws are generic. You can’t have a law for Mrs. Berenson, or a law that excludes Mrs. Berenson.”

She is not the focus of the law, added Eguren. Whether a person is serving out a year or life, the time can be served in Peru or in the country of origin. “We will not be pardoning anything, only changing the place of imprisonment,”

New law allowing jailed foreigners to serve sentences at home country doesn't apply to U.S. citizen Lori Berenson (Peruvian Times)

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