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American inmate hopes to marry Peruvian
( 2003-09-18 10:22) (Agencies)

After nearly eight years in prison on charges of terrorism, American inmate Lori Berenson hopes to marry a Peruvian man in a behind-bars ceremony, her mother said Wednesday.

Escorted by police, Lori Berenson, center, returns to the Lima safehouse that she shared with leftist rebels who police say were plotting to attack Congress, in Lima, in this October 20, 2000 file photo.  [AP]
The prospective groom is not a fellow prisoner but the two have known each other for several years, Rhoda Berenson told The Associated Press by telephone from New York City.

"We are very hopeful for Lori's sake that ... they can get married soon," said Rhoda Berenson.

A spokeswoman from Peru's National Penitentiary Institute Prison said prison weddings were allowed, but Berenson had not yet filed the necessary paperwork.

Berenson, 33, a former Massachusetts Institute of Technology student and New York resident, is being held in a prison in the Andes Mountains outside of the city of Cajamarca, some 350 miles north of Lima.

She was convicted by a secret military court in 1996 and sentenced to life in prison for being a Tupac Amaru leader and plotting the thwarted attack.

That decision was overturned in 2000 and the following year she was found guilty in a civilian court on the lesser charges of "terrorist collaboration" and sentenced to 20 years in prison, including time served. Berenson denies the charges.

The wedding would be Berenson's second. She was briefly married to a former Salvadoran rebel when she lived in El Salvador.

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