Shining Path newlyweds may qualify for conjugal visits

Abimael Guzman, the imprisoned leader of the bloody Shining Path insurgency, and his new wife, Elena Iparraguirre, may be able to have conjugal visits, daily El Comercio reported the president of Peru’s judicial branch, Javier Villa, as saying.

Visits between Guzman and Iparraguirre “will depend on various factors,” Villa said, adding: “the wedding responds to a humanitarian right.”

Guzman, 75, and Iparraguirre were married on Friday morning during a 15-minute civil ceremony at the maximum security Callao Naval Base prison, where the Shining Path founder and former university professor is serving a life sentence, the president of the National Penitentiary Institute, Ruben Rodriguez, told Radioprogramas.


Iparraguirre was the Shining Path’s second-in-command.

The National Penitentiary Institute (INPE) earlier this year denied the couple’s formal request to be brought together for the wedding ceremony, citing security concerns. But penitentiary officials later reversed their decision.

Following the ceremony Iparraguirre was returned to her cell at the maximum security wing of Santa Monica women’s prison in Chorrillos.

Guzman, whose messianic communist insurgency nearly brought Peru’s government to its knees, was captured with Iparraguirre in 1992. The insurgency and the brutal backlash by state security forces cost nearly 70,000 lives.

The pair were allowed to live together as cell mates until just before the beginning of their third trial, which ended in 2006 with guilty verdicts.

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