Through secret laws Pinochet obtained US$442 million from the Central Bank and the Treasury
An investigation by ArchivosChile and the newspaper La Nación, published today, January 24, 2010, reveals that the government of Augusto Pinochet ordered the secret transfer of US$442 million dollars to the Ministry of Defense and the Armed Forces between 1979 and 1981. The transfers include “loans” of US$292 million from the Central Bank in the name of Augusto Pinochet. ArchivosChile has filed requests through the Access to Public Information Law to find out if and how General Pinochet repaid the loans, as well as other information about the secret transfers, which are the equivalent of approximately $1.5 billion in today’s dollars. The ArchivosChile-La Nación investigation, conducted by journalists Jorge Escalante and John Dinges, uncovered the transactions in the texts of six laws and decree laws, all labeled “secret” or “reserved”, issued in the years 1979-1981. The investigation also revealed the existence of the item “overpayments” – in an amount exceeding one million dollars – in the budget plan of the Armed Forces and the Ministry of Defense.
The report, together with the unpublished reproductions of the secret laws, are published this Sunday, January 24, in La Nación Domingo.