A Step Forward in Justice for 1989 Jesuit Massacre


Montano was indicted at a federal immigration court in Boston, MA. Image source: Huffington Post

In a roundabout development in the search for justice in the 1989 massacre of 6 Jesuit priests, their housekeeper and her daughter by the Salvadoran military during El Salvador's Civil War, one of the accused perpetrators - ex-Colonel Inocente Orlando Montano - has been formally indicted in US immigration courts for falsifying immigration documents. If convicted, Montano faces up to 40 years in prison. Separately, Montano has also been indicted by a Spanish court along with 19 other Salvadoran military officers for perpetrating the 1989 Jesuit massacre. Spain has submitted extradition orders for the officers to the Salvadoran government. This week, the Salvadoran Supreme Court agreed to begin extradition proceedings for 13 of the 20 indicted officers.  The court is summoning the officers to hear their testimony in order to decide if the officers will be sent to trial in Spain. The accused officers are currently protected from prosecution in domestic courts under El Salvador's controversial Amnesty Law, which banned criminal court cases concerning Civil War human rights violations.  

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In 1989, six Jesuit priests, five of them Spaniards and one Salvadoran, were brutally murdered at the Central American University Jose Simeon Cañas (UCA) along with their housekeeper and her daughter. Following the news about Colonel Montano’s extradition to Spain, and with the law overturned, human rights defenders believe that now is time for the case to be reopened in El Salvador. Photo: Internet