Peru clears former government leaders after probe of forced sterilizations

Peru's former President Alberto Fujimori attends a judge's verdict about his sentence in prison, in LimaPeru has closed an inquiry into whether former president Alberto Fujimori and his cabinet members forcibly sterilized thousands of indigenous women as part of a birth control campaign that targeted the rural poor. Prosecutor Marco Guzman told Reuters on Friday that after interviewing hundreds of affected women, he found no crimes against humanity were committed and no evidence they were systematically coerced into being sterilized. The emblematic human rights case in Peru, archived in 2009 and reopened in 2011, could have extended the 25-year jail sentence of Fujimori, already in prison for corruption and human rights abuses linked to a crackdown on armed rebels. It also threatened to lock up half a dozen members of his cabinet, including Alejandro Aguinaga, now an influential congressman and spokesman for Fujimori's political party.

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