The Argentine Justice took a key step and began the process of extradition of Jones Huala to Chile
Now it must be decided where he will remain locked up while the steps are taken for him to be transferred to Santiago, where he must complete a 6-year prison sentence
Jones Huala was arrested this Monday in Rio Negro
The Public Ministry of the Argentine province of Río Negro transferred the detention of Mapuche activist Facundo Jones Huala to the Federal Court of Bariloche , who will have to decide shortly in which security unit he will be locked up. This step launched this midday the extradition process to Chile of the leader of the Mapuche Ancestral Resistance (RAM ), a country that has been demanding him since he escaped in February 2022 while he was under house arrest after having He has been sentenced to 6 years in prison for causing a fire and for carrying weapons.
Jones Huala will leave Police Station No. 36 of Dina Huapi this afternoon, a tourist town 20 kilometers northeast of Bariloche, where he was taken after being arrested this Monday morning in El Bolsón.
In the Federal Court of Bariloche, the Mapuche activist is at the disposal of the prosecutor María Cándida Etchepare, who will start the extradition procedure requested this Monday by Chile so that he completes the sentence in that country.
You may be interested in: Jones Huala: what the extradition process is like and how long it can take
It will be the Argentine federal court that will decide where Jones Huala will be detained in the coming days. The possibilities that are being considered are a jail of the Aeronautical Security Police (PSA), of the Federal Police, of Squadron No. 34 of the Gendarmerie or, directly, that he be transferred to Federal Prison No. 14 of Esquel, located 300 kilometers south of Bariloche.
This is not the first time he has been extradited. The same thing happened in 2018. At that time, after being arrested during a Gendarmerie control 80 kilometers south of Bariloche, he spent 13 months in the Esquel prison until his transfer to Chile was confirmed. in an oral trial.
Dina Huapi Police Station No. 36
It was Gustavo Villanueva, at that time the substitute judge in Bariloche, who finally upheld the request for extradition from the trans-Andean justice system. The ruling was appealed until it reached the Supreme Court of Justice, which upheld the magistrate's measure on the same grounds.
Now, four years later, Jones Huela will go through the same procedural steps again. The difference is that on that occasion the Chilean courts requested him to try him, and in this case for escaping the sentence while averaging the third year of the six he was sentenced to.
Precisely, the time he had been locked up in Temuco earned him the benefit of home detention, which he lost in February of last year when he did not appear before the Court of Guarantees of Río Bueno, which had imposed the punishment and made the sentence more flexible.
It may interest you: Jones Huala spent the night alone in a cell in a tourist town and faces a new extradition trial to Chile
The investigators who ended up finding and imprisoning him in El Bolsón believe that Jones Huala crossed the Cordillera shortly after deciding to escape and, even, that in recent months he was behind some of the arson attacksand vandalism registered in the region, which were accompanied by pamphlets and graffiti from the extremist group RAM, of which the activist is considered the leader.
Interpol's red alert
The extradition request will go a long way. It will originate in the Guarantee Court and will go to the Appeals Court of Valdivia, to be submitted to the Chilean Foreign Ministry , which will forward it to its Argentine counterpart.
Then, it will go to the local federal justice. There it will lead to the extradition trial, whose verdict will be carried out quickly. In 2018, Jones Huala traveled to Chile shortly after the final hearing, in heavy custody by Argentine security agencies.