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Man convicted in priest massacre deported from LA to El Salvador

A former army officer from El Salvador convicted of taking part in the 1989 massacre of six Jesuit priests during that country's civil war has been deported from the United States, authorities said Tuesday.

Gonzalo Guevara Cerritos was flown back to El Salvador on Monday, six months after he was arrested in Los Angeles, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said in a statement.

He had illegally entered the country in January 2005, the agency said.

Guevara Cerritos was a sub-lieutenant with the Salvadoran army's counterinsurgency Atlacatl Battalion during that country's bloody war against the FMLN, a leftist guerrilla group, during the 1980s and early 1990s.

Authorities said he and eight other officers and soldiers were convicted of involvement in the 1989 killing of six priests, their cook and her teenage daughter at a university in the capital city of El Salvador. Jesuits had called for a peaceful, negotiated end to the war and some in the army considered them to be subversives, along with union and human rights activists.

In 1991, Guevara Cerritos was convicted in El Salvador of instigation and conspiracy to commit acts of terrorism. He was sentenced to three years in prison.

He spent nearly two years under house arrest before he was pardoned by the government under a 1993 general amnesty, U.S. immigration officials said.

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