New clues to one of Spain's oldest terrorism mysteries

Other News Materials 25 February 2009 15:55 (UTC +04:00)

Spanish police could be about to solve one of the country's oldest terrorism-related criminal mysteries, press reports said Wednesday.

Police have now spent four months in the south-eastern French countryside looking for the remains of Publio Cordon, a businessman who is believed to have been kidnapped by the far-left group Grapo (Anti-Fascist Resistance Groups of the First of October) in 1995, dpa reported.

Cordon's family paid the abductors a ransom worth 2.4 million euros (3 million dollars). Grapo claimed to have released the entrepreneur in Barcelona, but he never returned home.

Former Grapo leader Fernando Silva Sande, who is serving several prison sentences, has now said he buried Cordon in the region of Mont Ventoux, the daily El Pais quoted sources close to the case as saying.

Silva Sande claimed Cordon was killed accidentally when trying to escape from the house where he was being kept shortly after his abduction.

Judicial sources, however, said they doubted the veracity of Sande Silva's statement.

Police were also having difficulties searching for Cordon's alleged grave in a vast area, the geography of which had changed in 14 years.

Grapo is now virtually extinct after killing dozens of people when it was at its most active in the 1970s and 1980s.