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  • People are arrested during the military coup in Chile, September 1973.

    People are arrested during the military coup in Chile, September 1973. | Photo: EFE

The three political prisoners were fatally shot by army officers as they were being transported to a concentration camp.

Chile’s Supreme Court has jailed three Augusto Pinochet-era agents for their role in murdering a trio of political prisoners during the country's 17-year military dictatorship.

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Army Lieutenant Colonel Sergio Gutierrez Rodriguez and former sub-officers Ricardo Alvarez Jalabert and Carlos Contreras Hidalgo have been sentenced to 15 years and one day in prison for committing three homicides in 1973.

Austrian university student Nenad Teodorovic Sertic, a member of the Movimiento de Izquierda Revolucionaria (MIR), was killed by the officers, along with his social-worker wife, Elizabeth Cabrera Balarriz, and fellow student Luis Munoz Bravo.

The three were arrested in their homes on September 14, 1973 and were to be taken to a concentration camp at the Cerro Moreno air base. During the trip, the officers stopped their vehicles and fatally shot the young trio.

The Court has also ruled that the State of Chile must pay US$154,000 in compensation to the late couple’s son.

On September 11, 1973 the leftist government of Salvador Allende was brutally overthrown in a U.S.-backed coup that left the president dead, followed by the rounding up, torture, killing, disappearance and exile of thousands of Chileans over the next couple of decades.


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