Human Rights

Torturer of general Bachelet released from prison

SANTIAGO – The man who tortured general Alberto Bachelet, father of former president Michelle Bachelet, has been released from prison. Ramón Cáceres served part of prison sentence and was conditionally released for good behavior. Alberto Bachelet, a colleague of Cáceres at the Chilean Air Force, died of cardiac arrest as result of the interrogations, executed by Cáceres.

Alberto Bachelet served as general for the Chilean Air Force until the coup d´état on September 11, 1973, when he was among the first Allende-loyalists arrested after opposing Augusto Pinochet.

He was being held at the academy of the Chilean Air Force, where he was tortured by his own students and former comrades. After being released and put under house arrest, he was arrested again and tortured by, among others, Ramón Cáceres. Bachelet died of cardiac arrest during one of these interrogations.

Despite these human rights violations, Cáceres was conditionally released by a court in Santiago, as he served over half of his four-year prison sentence. According to the Parole Commission, as quoted by Radio Cooperativa, Ramón Cáceres never regretted his crimes, arguing he just followed orders given by the military command during the time. Still, his good behavior weighed heavier in the process of the acceptance of his conditional release.

The general´s family

During the imprisonment of Alberto Bachelet, his family was still living in Chile, and a year after his death his wife and daughter Michelle were arrested as well, brought to detention center Villa Grimaldi and tortured there. They managed to escape the country later and went into exile in Australia and East Germany. Michelle returned to Chile during the dictatorship and, in 2006, became Chile´s first female president.

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