Agent Will Face Three Perjury Counts In Police Slayings
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) _ A San Juan judge ruled Friday that an undercover agent who led two young independence advocates into a confrontation with police in which they were slain must face trial on three counts of perjury.
However, Judge Luis Saavedra Serrano dismissed a charge of kidnapping against former police officer Alejandro Gonzalez Malave.
Gonzalez Malave is charged with lying to a Puerto Rico Senate Committee during its investigation of the July 25, 1978 police slayings of two pro- independence youths who allegedly planned to blow up a transmission tower at the hill called Cerro Maravilla.
He had also been charged with kidnapping taxi driver Julio Ortiz Molina. The taxi driver drove Gonzalez Malave and the two doomed youths to the tower site.
Defense attorneys argued that Gonzalez Malave was only following orders.
Ten other police officers were convicted this year on federal counts of perjury in the case, and they will be tried in the U.S. Commonwealth of Puerto Rico’s courts on charges of first-degree murder.
The charges against them were brought following a 1983 Senate investigation during which some police officers changed earlier testimony and stated that Arnaldo Dario Rosado and Carlos Soto Arrivi were killed by a police firing squad after they surrendered.
The official version upheld in earlier federal and local investigations was that the youths were killed in a shootout with police.
The youths accompanied Gonzalez Malvave because he was posing as a fellow independence advocate.