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FILE - In this March 10, 1998 file photo, former Chilean dictator Gen. Augusto Pinochet is shown in Santiago, Chile. The ghosts of Chile's four-decade-old, bloody coup d'etat, which led to the torture, and disappearance of thousands of political opponents, are coming to an Orlando, Florida courtroom with the start of a civil trial involving a military commander and the family of Victor Jara. The family of Jara is suing Lt. Pedro Pablo Barrientos Nunez, a former military officer in the regime of Gen. Augusto Pinochet for damages, claiming that Barrientos Nunez was in charge of the stadium where Jara was tortured and killed in 1973. The trial starts in Orlando, Fla., Monday, June 13. 2016.(AP Photo/Santiago Llanquin, File)

A Chilean judge sentenced 106 ex-intel agents for human rights abuses under Pinochet


In one of Chile's largest mass prosecutions, a judge sentenced 106 former intelligence agents for their role in the kidnappings and disappearances of 16 leftist militants during the August Pinochet dictatorship that spanned nearly two decades, from 1972 until 1990, according to CNN. 

The sentences range from 541 days to 20 years.

According to the 714-page ruling on Friday night, the convictions honed in on the 16 leftist militants who were abducted by National Intelligence Directorate agents between June 1974 and January 1975. They were transported to detention centers, never to be seen again. 

The secret police attempted to cover-up the disappearances of the 16 militants, and more than 100 others, by planting stories in foreign newspapers to imply that they were killed abroad.

Many of the agents were already serving sentences for other human rights abuses. 

The judge also ordered the state to pay more than $7.5 million to the victims' families. 

The 16 militants who were the focus of the case represented Pinochet's crimes on a small scale. During his time in office, government investigations discovered that nearly 2,300 people had disappeared and more than 30,000 have been tortured.

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