AN appeal by former ETA terrorist Kepa Pikabea Ugalde has been thrown out by The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).
He was asking that the 10 years he spent in a French prison be deducted from the 30-year term imposed on him in Spain for three counts of murder.
The ECHR decided that the time served in France should not be taken into account as the sentence was imposed for belonging to a terrorist group. This was a different offence for which he was jailed in Spain – specifically the three murders.
The Strasbourg court recognised that in Spain the maximum term possible is 30-years and decided that this should not be reduced on the basis of time served for a separate offence in another EU country.
Pikabea, 63, was arrested in France in 1994 and is now serving his Spanish sentence at Martutene Prison in San Sebastian. On March 29, he was moved to a regime of ‘semi freedom’ where he can spend time out of jail.
Pikabea Ugalde joined ETA in 1980. In that year alone, he participated in five terrorist attacks that resulted in the deaths of eight Guardia Civil and five National Police officers.
In May 1982, he joined a new command and took part in various deadly attacks. Then in 1991 he took part in more attacks that ended with the murder of several Guardia Civil, policemen and a private individual.