Sunday, November 06, 2005

More testimony in Carranza trial

Tales of torture and death squad activity are exposing a history that jurors in Memphis, Tennesee are unlikely to know anything about. Press reports describe more of last week's testimony in the human rights trial of Nicholas Carranza:

Daniel Alvarado, one of the accusers, said he was kidnapped while watching a soccer game in El Salvador in 1983 and tortured over several days into confessing to the murder of a U.S. military adviser.

Alvarado, 46, said he was hung blindfolded from a ceiling, repeatedly beaten and shocked with electrical wires attached to his body.

"I felt like my arms were being torn off," he testified through an interpreter. "Even to this day, my shoulders hurt all the time."

He said he later learned that the supervisor of the torture was an Army major who served under Carranza.

Alvarado said he was taken to a news conference after signing the confession and presented by Carranza as one of the assassins of Marine Col. Albert Schaufelberger.

Alvarado was later freed after U.S. investigators reviewed his confession. He has lived in Sweden since 1986.

Alvarado said his attackers refused to accept his story and that his torture lasted "I could not say how many hours or days" before he signed the confession.

"When I could stand it no more, I said, 'Yes, I will sign the paper,' and I signed the paper," he said.

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