‘Gracias Máxima’ – Argentinian War Criminal Arrested

  September 24, 2009 at 10:43 am by

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The Dutch-Argentinian pilot Julio Alberto Poch, who was arrested in Valencia on Tuesday, has been reported to the police by collegues after a discussion about Jorge Zorreguieta, father of princess Máxima of The Netherlands. Magazine ‘Página 12’ even ‘thanks’ the princess in one of their sub head lines, which says: ‘Gracias Máxima’. Poch is accused of being one of the pilots of the airplanes that dropped opponents of the Videla regime in the Atlantic Ocean.

According to newspaper ‘La Nación’, Julio Poch revealed his past to his collegues during a discussion they had in 2007 in restaurant Gado Gado on Bali. The conversations started about princess Máxima, and later about her father Jorge Zorreguieta and his role during the Videla dictatorship. Poch said that none of the people attending the dinner party had an idea what had happened in Argentina. He explained that it was a war, and during a war people get killed. He also told about his role on the so-called ‘vuelos de la muerte’, the death flights on which political opponents first got drugged, after which they were thrown in the Atlantic Ocean. One of his collegues later said to press agency TelamP “(He) told me how aboard his plane, people who were still alive were thrown off with the intent of executing them.”

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His collegues took the matter to the police, after which an investigation after Poch’s role during the Videla regime started. Poch was arrested on tuesday in Valencia, Spain, during his last return flight to Valencia before he was set to retire. Spanish police detained him during a 40-minute stopover before he was due to fly back to Amsterdam.

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