"Alleged Franco torturer found living, and running, peacefully in Madrid"

The Guardian
8 Oct 2013


Photograph: Cronica, El Mundo newspaper
"A man alleged to be one of the infamous torturers of the Franco regime, and known as Billy the Kid for his habit of spinning a gun around his finger as he beat his victims, has been living a peaceful, undisturbed, life in the heart of Madrid, even flying out to run the New York marathon on numerous occasions, it has emerged.
The name of Antonio González Pacheco stands out as a symbol of the brutality of General Francisco Franco's dictatorship. He is accused of multiple acts of torture against members of the republican opposition, and is reputed to have been especially sadistic, telling his victims how much he enjoyed beating them.
His name came to the fore last month when an Argentinian judge, María Romilda Servini de Cubría, called for his extradition – along with three other men accused of carrying out Franco's orders – after receiving a petition from his alleged victims' lawyers in Spain. Two of the men are in fact now dead, but González Pacheco and Jesús Muñecas Aguilar, an ex-police officer, could be summoned over the extradition request.
On Sunday, El Mundo newspaper published a photograph of González Pacheco that shocked many of his alleged victims. It shows him running the Madrid half-marathon in 2010, wearing a red top, black shorts – the same colours as the flag of Spain's fascist Falange party – and a black RUN NYC baseball cap. He finished in 2hrs 7mins 7secs, impressive for a man who celebrated his 67th birthday last weekend.
Antonio González Pacheco seen in 1981Antonio González Pacheco pictured shortly after the fall of Franco's dictatorship more than 30 years ago. This was previously the last known photograph of him. González Pacheco'a long hair may be gone, but the picture marks the first time he has been seen since shortly after the end of the dictatorship more than 30 years ago.

Following Franco's death in 1975, González Pacheco had joined the police's anti-terrorism unit. He helped run the "dirty war" against the Basque separatist group, Eta. He moved later to a private security firm, where he still works. He regularly runs marathons in Spain, Budapest and New York, and is said to pound the streets almost every day, but beyond that little is known of his private life."

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