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Commentary :: International
BTL:FBI Kills Fugitive Puerto Rican Nationalist Leader Filiberto Ojeda-Rios
29 Sep 2005
Interview with Jorge Farinacci, Puerto Rican independence activist, conducted by Between the Lines' Denise Manzari
FBI Kills Fugitive Puerto Rican Nationalist Leader Filiberto Ojeda-Rios

Interview with Jorge Farinacci, Puerto Rican independence activist, conducted by Denise Manzari

Longtime Puerto Rican nationalist leader Filiberto Ojeda-Rios has been killed by the FBI. On the FBI's Most Wanted list, U.S. authorities labeled Ojeda-Rios a terrorist and sought his arrest since 1990, when he cut off his electronic ankle bracelet while awaiting trial for his involvement in the 1983 $7 million Wells Fargo truck heist in West Hartford, Conn.

When the FBI discovered where Ojeda-Rios was hiding with his wife Elma Beatriz Rosado, in the mountains of Hormigueros, Puerto Rico, they began a three-day stakeout. Then on Friday, Sept. 23, at about 3 p.m., the FBI claims 72-year-old Ojeda-Rios suddenly opened the door of the farmhouse and began firing at them, injuring one of the agents in the stomach. They said they returned fire. According to an autopsy, Ojeda-Rios bled to death after being hit by a single bullet. His wife was detained but was later released. No one was allowed to enter the house until Saturday, almost a full day after Ojeda-Rios was shot.

According to Puerto Rican activists, the FBI has 125 arrest warrants on others allegedly connected to Los Macheteros, the pro-independence organization also known as the Boricua Popular Army, and cofounded by Ojeda-Rios. It also appears that the Sept. 23 raid was no coincidence, but deliberate on the part of the FBI, since that date commemorates the 1868 uprising against Spain and thus is the most sacred day to supporters of the Puerto Rican Independence movement.

Jorge Farinacci is an attorney and former co-defendant with Ojeda-Rios in the Wells Fargo trial. He spoke with Between The Lines' Denise Manzari about the impact the nationalist leader's death may have on the future of the Puerto Rican independence movement.

For more information, call ProLibertad at (718) 601-4751 or visit the website

LISTEN to this week's half-hour program of Between The Lines by clicking on one of the links below:
"Between The Lines" is a half-hour syndicated radio news magazine that each week features a summary of under-reported news stories and interviews with activists and journalists who offer progressive perspectives on international, national and regional political, economic and social issues. Because "Between The Lines" is independent of all publications, media networks or political parties, we are able to bring a diversity of voices to the airwaves generally ignored or marginalized by the major media. For more information on this week's topics and to check out our text archive listing topics and guests presented in previous programs visit:
"Between the Lines," WPKN 89.5 FM's weekly radio news magazine can be heard Tuesdays at 5:30 p.m. ET; Wednesdays at 8 a.m. ET and Saturdays at 2 p.m. ET (Wednesday's show airs at 7:30 a.m. ET during fundraising months of April and October).
For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Weekly Summary" which features a RealAudio link to the week's program for Between The Lines, send an email to btlsummary-subscribe (at)
For an email subscription of "Between The Lines Q&A" which features a RealAudio link and weekly transcript to one of the interviews featured on Between The Lines, send an email to btlqa-subscribe (at)
betweenthelines (at)
Distributed by Squeaky Wheel Productions
©2005 Between The Lines. All Rights Reserved.
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