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Court rules Pinochet can't be tried on fraud charges

President Augusto Pinochet cannot be tried while in office for alleged fraud in the purchase of state-owned land for his private weekend retreat, a judge ruled Friday.

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Adolfo Zaldivar, a lawyer who brought the case to court on behalf of 24 opposition leaders, said the ruling would be appealed on grounds that presidential immunity does not apply to criminal acts.

Later, Mr. Pinochet told a pro-government rally he would never give in to demands for his resignation. He hailed a newly decreed anti-terrorist law, which formalized arrest powers of his secret police. ''This will permit us to use the iron hand that you want us to use. Don't come talking about human rights,'' he said.

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