Chile’s top court upholds payment to Pinochet-era prisoners

SANTIAGO – Chile’s Supreme Court has ordered the Bachelet government to pay a total of $3.2 million to 71 former political prisoners who had been held during the military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet, from 1973 to 1990.

The apex court’s ruling upholds a lower court decision, rejecting the government’s contention that the statute of limitations had expired.

The plaintiffs are among nearly 37,000 former prisoners of the military regime headed by Gen. Augusto Pinochet certified by a special commission. It also confirmed that more than 3,000 were killed.

Families of those killed receive a small monthly indemnity, as do former prisoners.