Former Spanish commando and convicted murderer escaped arrest by hiding in the mountains
Alfredo Sanchez Chacon, 63, also known as the ‘Galician Rambo’, had been hiding in the mountains and woods of Spain’s northwestern region since last March when he failed to return to Monterroso prison in Lugo after a day off. The convicted murderer and notorious escape artist was due for release in 2025.
A former Spanish Legion serviceman and army commando, Chacon used his survival skills to live alone in the desert, avoiding capture for almost a year. Residents were on high alert due to constant food thefts and after a hunter spotted the fugitive camping in the forest.
Chacon was finally apprehended early Thursday morning near La Coruña, after he attempted to break into a house to steal food. Two people heard noises and came out to chase him. They also called their neighbor, an off-duty member of the Civil Guard, Spain’s law enforcement agency. The three men saw Chacon with a backpack and a tent on his back heading towards the road.
The convict had difficulty running due to the weight of the supplies he was carrying and because he was limping, El Pais reported. However, he tried to resist. Manuel Vilela, the guard who made the arrest, told reporters he fired two warning shots, but Chacon did not stop.
“He was brandishing a stick and wanted to hit me with it. I walked away, hit him with a collapsible baton four or five times,” said Vilela, quoted by El Mundo. “I lunged at him, used a neck brace, and that was the end of it.”
A Civil Guard source described Chacon to El Pais as “quite old and very broken” at the time of arrest. Spanish media said the man was emaciated.
The son of a civil guard himself, Chacon was first imprisoned in 1997. He had been on the run for eight years and had a criminal record in several Spanish regions. The charges included the murder of a 24-year-old man, attempted murder, several rapes, 23 robberies and several shootings with the Civil Guard. He had been arrested 38 times.
Authorities struggled to identify him, as his most recent photo was taken a decade earlier. They finally managed to catch the fugitive in March 1997, when he went to a brothel after spending seven months in a tent in the mountains.
Chacon only spent nine months behind bars. Together with a fellow prisoner, he climbed down a wall using a rope made of sheets and fled to Portugal. After hiding for two years, Chacon was recaptured in a Galician bar in 1999.
He escaped again in 2001, but was arrested the same day.
According to Spanish media, police are investigating robberies and other crimes Chacon may have committed during his third escape. He now faces an extension of his prison sentence.
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