Alberto Fujimori’s Lived Experiences in Prison

A few weeks ago, family members and supporters of Peruvian ex-president Alberto Fujimori, in prison for human rights violations during his 1990-2000 administration, posted a photo of the allegedly-ailing ex-president and lobbying for his pardon from a 25-year prison sentence on humanitarian grounds (a pardon that was initially denied, though Fujimori continues to pursue a pardon). The argument is that the president, suffering from tongue cancer, cannot possibly live in the conditions demanded of him in prison.

However, Lillie Langtry points us to these sets of photos showing Fujimori’s prison “cell.” Suffice to say, these photos portray a far different picture of Fujimori’s prison existence than his family and supporters painted. Among other things, he has his own (well-supplied) kitchen, a reclining hospital-style bed, a television, books, a sofa, a chest of drawers, an easel and painting supplies, and even a heated toilet seat (which apparently is a thing that exists). As one of the stories says, it appears Fujimori “lives with luxuries that no prisoner in Peru has.” The photos appear legitimate and have a much broader scope than the up-close photo of a suffering Fujimori that gave no indicator as to the conditions in which he lived. Certainly, while these photos are probably not the final say in the matter, they certainly at least puncture somewhat the story of Fujimori-as-victim. Indeed, when one considers the number of victims, both those murdered and those who survived, of military death squads that served at Fujimori’s behest, it’s hard to see him as a victim in any fashion here.

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About Colin M. Snider

I have a Ph.D. in history, specializing in Latin American History and Comparative Indigenous History. My dissertation focused on Brazil. Beyond Latin America generally, I'm particularly interested in class identities, military politics, human rights, labor, education, music, and nation. I can be found on Twitter at @ColinMSnider.
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