Fujimori’s former spy chief publishes 3rd book and claims he is deprived press freedom

Vladimiro Montesinos, ex-President Alberto Fujimori’s once-feared intelligence chief and eminence gris, has just recently published his third book and is demanding that Peru’s National Penitenciary Institute, or INPE, authorize all national and foreign journalists to interview him from his jail cell, said his lawyer Estela Valdivia.

“Vladimiro Monstesinos is interested in being interviewed by anyone,” said Valdivia in comments to Radio RPP.

“There are many requests and he is being deprived of his right to freedom of opinion… We live in a democracy,” she added, asking the press to plead with the INPE to allow them to conduct jailhouse interviews with Montesinos.

“For the past seven years I have been asking for this,” said Valdivia, who added that an email account has been set up so that Montesinos may be contacted and interviewed via the internet ([email protected]).

“(Montesinos) would like to be interviewed by all those who have asked to do so, but he is forbidden from communicating with the outside world,” said Valdivia.

In 2001, she argued, Montesinos was punished and denied TV and newspaper access for three months after he was interviewed by a journalist from Telemundo in his jail cell.

Montesinos is currently serving 20 years in prison on multiple convictions for everything from bribing media barons, judges and legislators to selling assault rifles to Colombian FARC guerrillas, and also faces a separate trial accusing him of directing the Colina group.

The Colina group machine gunned 15 people, including an 8-year-old boy, in a the courtyard of a tenement building in Lima’s Barrios Altos district in 1991 and kidnapped and murdered nine students and one professor at La Cantuta University in 1992.

A master of subterfuge, Montesinos cultivated an atmosphere of paranoia and fear among Peru’s political, business and military elite with rumors that he kept a vast collection of wiretapped phone conversations and videos documenting orgies, illicit drug use and myriad acts of corruption.

He fled to Panama after one of his own videos was leaked, showing him bribing Congressman Beto Kouri in September 2000. It was the first of the infamous ‘vladi-videos’ to be broadcast and led to the spy chief going underground until his capture in Venezuela in June 2001.

“In Callao’s Naval Base singers, artists, witches or friends are denied access,” said Valdivia in reference to Fujimori’s “guilded cage” regime, which includes including quasi unrestricted visits by family and friends and access to public phones.

“Even for his birthday. All those who visit him must have INPE’s permission.”

During the press conference, Valdivia also presented Montesinos’ lastest book, “War without a face,” in which she said he analyzes how terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda operate in today’s world.

In his book, Monstesinos argues that Peru is unprepared and vulnerable to terrorsit attacks, and argues that a Chavist-inspired plot designed by Venezuela and Cuba to overthrow Peru President Alan García is imminent.

“He wrote the book by hand… with much enthousiasm,” said Valdivia. “He is very intelligent and brillant.”

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