Cesare Battisti: Ex-militant extradited by Bolivia arrives in Italy

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AFP

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Cesare Battisti arrived in Rome, flanked by a dozen cops

An Italian former militant communist captured in Bolivia has arrived in Rome, officers have confirmed.

Cesare Battisti, 64, was extradited after being present in Santa Cruz de La Sierra on Saturday in a global police operation.

Battisti had been serving a 12-year sentence in Italy when he escaped from jail in 1981.

He was subsequently sentenced in absentia to life in jail for 4 murders carried out through the 1970s.

Battisti had lived for years in Brazil however vanished after an arrest warrant was issued final month.

The Falcon 900 aircraft landed at Ciampino airport on Monday morning, and Battisti was escorted off the aircraft by a dozen cops.

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EPA

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Inside Minister Matteo Salvini, left, was ready for Battisti on the airport

Italy’s inside minister, Matteo Salvini, was ready on the airport.

Native media report Battisti will likely be taken to Rebibbia jail, the place he’ll serve his life sentence. It’s going to reportedly begin with six months of solitary confinement.

Shortly after the flight left Bolivia, Mr Salvini tweeted that he was “proud and moved” by Battisti’s seize.

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AFP

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An image of Battisti on the aircraft leaving Bolivia was launched by Italy’s inside ministry

In a message on Fb forward of the extradition, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte mentioned: “We’re happy with this end result that our nation has been awaiting for too a few years.”

He thanked the Bolivian authorities and singled out Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro for his “efficient co-operation” that led to Battisti’s seize.

The far-right Brazilian chief, who took workplace on 1 January, had pledged to extradite Battisti.

How was he arrested?

Battisti was arrested by a particular Interpol staff on Saturday round 17:00 (21:00 GMT) on a avenue of the central Bolivian metropolis of Santa Cruz.

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EPA/HANDOUT

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Cesare Battisti after his arrest in Bolivia

He was alone, sporting sun shades and a faux beard, in response to Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera.

He didn’t resist or attempt to escape. Bolivian Inside Minister Carlos Romero mentioned Battisti had entered Bolivia illegally.

Italian police revealed a video on Twitter that purports to indicate him moments earlier than his arrest.

Battisti spent years in Brazil as a refugee, with the help of former left-wing President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

However Lula’s successor, President Michel Temer, revoked his standing as a everlasting resident in December, when an arrest warrant was issued.

Battisti, who has a five-year-old Brazilian son, advised AFP final 12 months he would face “torture” and loss of life if he returned to Italy.

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AFP PHOTO/BRAZILIAN FEDERAL POLICE/HO

In December, Brazil’s Federal Police launched an image displaying doable disguises that Battisti would possibly use.

Brazilian politician Eduardo Bolsonaro, one of many president’s sons, tweeted to Mr Salvini: “Brazil is not a land of bandits. The ‘little reward’ is coming.”

‘Years of lead’

In 1979, Battisti was jailed for belonging to a far-left terrorist group outlawed in Italy – the Armed Proletarians for Communism (PAC).

He escaped from jail two years later.

He was later convicted in absentia over the killing of 4 folks, together with two Italian legislation officers.

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AFP

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A Brazilian court docket in 2011 rejected an Italian extradition demand

Battisti has admitted being a part of the PAC however denies duty for the murders. As a substitute, he describes himself as a political refugee.

Since his jail escape, he has gone on to turned a profitable author of police novels.

After his escape, Battisti first fled to France and joined a gaggle of fellow left-wing Italian militants who have been granted official safety by France’s then-socialist authorities.

These militants had, like Battisti, additionally escaped a very violent interval of latest Italian historical past within the 1970s and 1980s.

That period is now often known as “anni di piombo” (years of lead) – referring to the huge variety of bullets fired.

Throughout this time, militants on each ends of the political spectrum carried out assassinations, bombings and comparable assaults, with the purpose of overthrowing the Italian authorities.

When the political scenario in France modified and the group was not protected, Battisti moved to Mexico and later to Brazil to keep away from being extradited. He was arrested by Brazilian authorities in 2007, prompting the Italian authorities to request his extradition.

However President Lula granted Battisti refugee standing in 2010, a transfer that drew robust criticism from Italy.

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