A former Peruvian military officer must pay $37 million in damages to two survivors of a 1985 massacre he led in an Andean village.
U.S. District Judge Adalberto Jordan in Miami ordered Telmo Hurtado, 46, to give the money to two women who were children at the time of the Accomarca Massacre. The incident left 69 civilians dead, including most of the women's family members.
''I'm very satisfied,'' said Miami attorney Robert Brochin, who litigated the victims' case on a pro bono basis. ``We hope this goes a step toward holding Lt. Hurtado accountable for his atrocious acts.''
Hurtado was a second lieutenant in Peru's army when he led 30 soldiers into a village on April 14, 1985. The army was looking for members of the Shining Path rebel group, and Hurtado claimed an informant led them to Accomarca. The soldiers pulled residents from their homes, raping the women and torturing the men and children. They executed the villagers and incinerated their bodies.
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