Priest guilty in 'Dirty War' trial





Catholic priest accused in a series of deaths and kidnappings during Argentina's Dirty War was convicted and sentenced to life in prison Tuesday

Former police chaplain Christian von Wernich was found guilty of being a "co-participant" with police in seven homicides, 31 torture cases and 42 kidnappings, ending a trial that has focused attention on the church during the 1976-83 military rule.

Hundreds of people beat drums and set off fireworks outside the federal courthouse after the verdict was announced. Dozens of spectators cheered inside the packed courtroom including headscarved members of rights group the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo, who for the last 30 years have been seeking to learn the fate of sons and daughters who disappeared during a crackdown on dissent.


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