TRIALS OF MOST PROMINENT LEFTIST PRISONERS

Created: 4/20/1974

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

'1ciiTLEi Tha government haa announced thatits aoat preninent leftistregime cabinet!officara and leftistget under way before the end ofofefendants, mainly military man,this week will probably last at least aand sentences will be handed down onlytrials are over.hwH-

'; Defense attorneys' have argued that the military tribunal beforo which, their clients are being tried lackshey claim that because thaoffenses were committed prior to the military coup and the junta's declarations of atates of siege and internal war, the trials should be conducted under peacetima provisions of the military justice code. Decisions of peacetime military tribunals may beto the oivil Supreme Court, but appeals from the judgments of wartime courts martial may be made only to higher military authorities..,

-1 ecree law issued soon after.the coup, the government construes the military justice code to hold that the'date of the initiation ofefendant, not tha data of the alleged'offense, determines jurisdiction. Moreover, military prosecutors at tha currant trials fj have argued that an undeclared state ofefore the coup. .

' The regime's prominent civilian prisonerswill be brought before wartime courts martial

'and charged with 'pre-coup violations of the military justiceheir defense attorneya undoubtedlyraise,the jurisdictional ltsue, but they are,

unlikely to prevail. The junta is not easily swayed by arguments that the juridical measures it considers necessary and proper under what itisees as aemergency situation do not measure, up toaccepted standards.

Original document.

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