Guatemalan judge orders second genocide trial for former dictator

A Guatemalan judge ruled May 21 that former dictator Efrain Rios Montt will have a second genocide trial for ordering a 1982 massacre which killed 201 people. Judge Carol Patricia Flores found enough evidence linking Rios Montt to the Dos Erres massacre for another genocide trial. The massacre, which took place when about 20 soldiers were ordered to search a village for weapons, was one of the country’s deadliest during the 36-year Guatemalan civil war. Rios Montt’s defense lawyer argued that he was not present during the killings and, therefore, cannot be liable for the massacre. The prosecution maintains that the massacre was part of a military operation ordered by Rios Montt. The second genocide charge comes just months after Rios Montt’s trial for the killing of 1,700 indigenous peasants.

From Jurist, May 23. Used with permission.

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