Former Chilean Army Officer Found Liable for 1973 Murder of Víctor Jara After U.S.-Backed Coup

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Pedro Pablo Barrientos Núñez was a Lieutenant in the Tejas Verdes regiment of the Chilean Army at the time of the coup d’etat led by General Augusto Pinochet in Chile. In 2009, eye witness statements revealed that Barrientos commanded a section of soldiers within the Second Company of the Tejas Verdes at Chile Stadium, a section responsible for overseeing the detention of civilians, and helped execute a strategy of mass incarceration, torture, and extrajudicial killing at the Stadium in the days immediately following the coup. He is alleged to have spent extensive time inside the stadium interrogating suspected leftists, including Víctor Jara.

According to eyewitness testimony, Barrientos directly commanded the soldiers who tortured and interrogated Víctor Jara. Barrientos is alleged to have played a game of “Russian Roulette” with Jara, which culminated in Barrientos shooting Jara in the back of the head and then ordering his solders to riddle Jara’s body with bullets.   In 2012, a three part investigative news report by Chilevisión entitled “¿Quién mató a Víctor Jara?”  (Who Killed Víctor Jara?) revealed to the public for the first time that Lieutenant Barrientos was living in the United States—in Deltona, Florida—where he currently resides.

On December 26, 2012, Barrientos was indicted in Chile for the murder of Víctor Jara.  The Chilean Supreme Court approved an extradition request the following year, which could result in Barrientos being extradited to Chile to face a criminal investigation or trial.  CJA believes that the Chilean government submitted the extradition request to the United States government in October 2013, but the United States has not yet acted publicly upon the request.

Perpetrators – CJA

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