Anticorruption court sentences ex-general and ex-intelligence chief to six years in prison

The former commander general of Peru’s Air Force, Eslevan Bello, and the former head of Peru’s intelligence service, Humberto Rozas Bonicelli, were found guilty today of helping jailed ex-presidential advisor Vladimiro Montesinos escape to Panama amid a bribery scandal in 2000. According to daily La República, the Third Anticorruption Court sentenced Bello and Rozas to six years in prison. Federal prosecutors had requested an eight-year prison sentence and a fine of 300,000 soles, or about $100,000.

Montesinos fled to Panama after a videotape was released of him bribing an opposition congressman in September 2000. He was later arrested in Venezuela and extradited to Peru in 2001, where he faced charges ranging from drug-trafficking to murder. Montesinos is currently imprisoned at the Callao maximum-security naval base.

The videotape was the first of the infamous ‘vladi-videos’ to be broadcast. They revealed a web of corruption that implicated politicians, businessmen and media owners and led to jailed ex-President Alberto Fujimori’s resignation.

However numerous videotapes allegedly disappeared when Fujimori, 69, sent military officers posing as prosecutors with a fake search warrant to seize videos from Montesinos apartment. On Dec. 11, 2007 Fujimori was sentenced to six years in prison for abusing his authority.

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