Page last updated at 19:54 GMT, Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Man accused of US intern's murder

Chandra Levy, undated image
Ms Levy had just finished an internship at the prisons bureau

A jailed Salvadorean immigrant has been charged with the 2001 murder of US intern Chandra Levy, a case which gripped the nation.

US officials say Ingmar Guandique, 27, killed Ms Levy as she was jogging in a Washington park.

Guandique is serving 10 years in jail for attacking two women in the same park where Ms Levy's body was found.

The unsolved case wrecked the career of politician Gary Condit who had been having a relationship with Ms Levy.

She was 24-years-old and had just completed an internship with the US Bureau of Prisons when she went missing on 1 May 2001.

Ms Levy's remains were not found for more than a year.

'Offering justice'

The BBC's Rajini Vaidyanathan, in Washington, says the mystery of who committed the crime attracted huge attention in the US media, and was dubbed one of the biggest unsolved cases in America.

Ingmar Guandique, undated image
Guandique faces up to 60 years in jail if he is found guilty

In the investigation into her disappearance it emerged that she had been having an affair with Democratic Congressman Mr Condit.

While he was never a suspect in the murder case, the controversy over Ms Levy's death led to the demise of Mr Condit's career, with him losing the support of his party, and eventually his California seat.

Announcing that a warrant had been issued, District of Columbia police chief Cathy Lanier said it had been "a long time coming".

"It dawned on me that there's very little I can do or anyone else can do for the Levys other than to offer them justice," she said.

The authorities said they hoped Guandique would be brought to Washington within the next two months to face a murder charge.

If convicted, he could face up to 60 years more behind bars.

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