Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Americas
Front Page 
World 
Africa 
Americas 
Asia-Pacific 
Europe 
Middle East 
South Asia 
-------------
From Our Own Correspondent 
-------------
Letter From America 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 
Tuesday, 21 March, 2000, 22:00 GMT
No parole for Noriega
Manuel Noriega
Noriega has spent 10 years in US prisons
Former Panamanian leader General Manuel Noriega has failed in an attempt to secure an early release from prison in the United States.

At a parole hearing in Miami, where Noriega is serving a 30-year drug trafficking sentence, officials heard arguments for and against his conditional release.

But the petition was turned down apparently after concerns were raised about the security risk his release could pose to the former US president, George Bush.

It was Mr Bush who in 1989 ordered US forces to invade Panama, which led to Noriega's arrest.

He was brought to Florida for trial in January 1990, and subsequently convicted on drug-trafficking charges.

He was initially sentenced to 40 years in prison, but this was later reduced by a US judge to 30 years.

Routine hearing

The recent parole hearing was granted as a matter of routine, after the former leader had served 10 years of his sentence.

According to US parole guidelines, the general will now remain in prison until 2007, when he may be released if his behaviour in prison is considered to have been acceptable.

Noriega was Panama's chief of police from 1971 to 1984, when he took command of the army and, in effect, the country.

He is still wanted in Panama on charges of executing army officers in 1989, and the Panamanian authorities last year requested his extradition from the US.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
Americas Contents

Country profiles
See also:

07 Apr 99 | Americas
Panama seeks Noriega extradition
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to other Americas stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Americas stories