London court releases ETA terrorist Troitiño on conditional bail

Author of 20 murders has been in English capital after being mistakenly freed by Spain in 2011

Madrid - 14 Feb 2014 - 14:24

A London court on Friday released ETA terrorist Antonio Troitiño on conditional bail after his arrest a day earlier at the request of the Spanish High Court.

Troitiño was ordered to report back to the Westminster Magistrate’s Court on March 14. He has been on the run from Spanish justice since April 2011 after being released due to a legal technicality applied by the Supreme Court. The High Court subsequently issued a new warrant but Troitiño had already fled the country. He had been in prison since 1987 after being handed a 2,500-year sentence for his part in more than 20 assassinations.

Troitiño was arrested in London in June 2012 on a European warrant issued by the same section of the Spanish High Court that erroneously freed him. Troitiño was in possession of six national identity cards, two driving licenses and two European health cards, all of which were false. He was remanded in custody awaiting extradition proceedings but released again in October 2013 after the European Court of Human Rights struck down the Parot doctrine, a legal mechanism used by the Spanish state to prevent terrorists and other dangerous criminals from being released before serving a maximum 30-year sentence.

The European arrest warrant for Troitiño was issued in connection with falsifying documentation and membership of a terrorist organization as Troitiño is suspected of having rejoined ETA. The Basque group declared a "definitive" halt to violent attacks in 2011 but has yet to disband. 

Dozens of ETA inmates have been released following the ECHR’s ruling, many of them who were serving terms totaling hundreds or thousands of years for multiple convictions.

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