Former dictator Jorge Rafael Videla was sentenced to 50 years in an Argentine prison yesterday. He was convicted for a his role in a government program which oversaw the kidnapping of babies from political prisoners during the military junta’s “dirty war.” Argentina’s last dictator, Reynaldo Bignone, also was also convicted and got 15 years. Both men are already serving life sentences for other crimes against humanity.
Over 34 babies were stolen between 1976-1983, taken away from their parents, leftist dissidents who were systematically tortured, raped and murdered by the Videla regime. The children were then raised by government officials.
Videla, 86, received the maximum sentence as the man criminally responsible for 20 of the baby thefts. Seven other government officials were convicted and two were absolved. A former military captain and his ex-wife were also sentenced after their adopted son, who was among the babies kidnapped by the Videla regime, testified against them.