Page last updated at 00:13 GMT, Tuesday, 14 July 2009 01:13 UK

Fujimori corruption trial opens

Alberto Fujimori in a file photo from 2008
Alberto Fujimori was sentenced to 25 years in April

The former president of Peru, Alberto Fujimori, found guilty of human rights abuses in April, has gone on trial again on charges of corruption.

Fujimori, who was president from 1990 to 2000, is accused of using state funds to pay his intelligence chief Vladimiro Montesinos $15m (£9.3m).

Fujimori admitted making the payment, but said he later repaid the money.

In April, Mr Fujimori was sentenced to 25 years in jail for ordering killings and kidnappings by the security forces.

'No criminal responsibility'

The prosecution alleges that the former president illegally channelled huge sums to Vladimiro Montesinos.

The multi-million dollar payment was allegedly made just two months before corruption accusations in late 2000 abruptly ended Fujimori's 10 years in power.

Montesinos, who is currently in prison convicted of several charges including corruption and embezzlement, was at the centre of the scandal which erupted after videos emerged showing him bribing opposition politicians and media magnates.

On Monday, Fujimori said the payment was not illegal because he had later reimbursed the state.

"I express my partial and relative conformity with the charges... I only acknowledge the facts, I don't accept the criminal responsibility, the punishment or the civil reparations," Fujimori told the court in Lima.

Several former ministers in Fujimori's administration are expected to testify during the trial.

The prosecution is seeking an eight-year sentence and a fine of some $660,000.

Fujimori was sentenced to 25 years in April after being found guilty of authorising an army death squad that killed 25 people in the early 1990s. He was already serving a six-year term after being found guilty in 2007 on separate charges of abuse of power.

The former president, who his supporters credit with crushing left-wing guerrillas during his time in office, still has residual support in Peru, says the BBC's Dan Collyns in Lima.

Some opinion polls suggest his daughter, Keiko, is a frontrunner for the presidential elections due in 2011.

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