Cesare Battisti is a former-left wing militant of the Armed Proletarians for Communism who has been on the run for four decades
Cesare Battisti, former left-wing militant wanted and sentenced in absencia to life in prison in Italy for four murders, was arrested on last Saturday night in Bolivia. The operation went into effect after a Brazilian court ordered the arrest of the Italian fugitive.
Indeed, Battisti, 63 years old and former member of the Armed Proletarians for Communism, has been on the run in Brazil for the last four decades. In the South American country, he was protected by the former government and especially by president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, despite Italy had been seeking his extradition the whole time. With the change of power that brought the right-wing politician Jair Bolsonaro to the presidency, Battisti escaped Brazil and went off the grid.
Bolsonaro had already expressed the desire of extradating Battisti to Italy during the electoral campaign. Now that the operation has been successful, he joyfully tweeted: “Congratulations to the responsibles of the capture of Cesare Battisti. Finally justice will be served for this Italian murder and ideological friend of one of the most corrupted governments that ever existed in this world (PT)”, and tweeting in Italian he also added mentioning the Minister of Interior Matteo Salvini: “Congratulations and always count on us, Minister Salvini!”. Salvini answered by thanking Bolsonaro.
Battisti has been arrested without any resistance in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia, by the Bolivian police, after the joint investigation of the Italian, Brazilian and Bolivian forces. The Interpol special force had localized the area were the wanted man was hiding already before Christmas.
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte confirmed that an aircraft is heading straight to Bolivia with the objective of taking Battisti to Italy as soon as possible “to pay for the four murders and for the crimes related to terrorism and armed struggle, and not because of his political ideas”.