Salvador Jorge Blanco
Blanco was born in Santiago de los Caballeros and studied law at the University of Santa Dominigo. He went into politics in the 1960's after the dictator Rafael Leónidas Trujillo was murdered. He joined a social democratic party, the Partido Revolucionario Dominicano (PRD). Blanco became leader of the party and won the 1982 presidential election.
At the same time Blanco became president, the world price on sugar dropped. The economy of the Dominican Republic was in a financial crisis as the government was spending far more than the country could afford and was three billion dollars in debt. The International Money Fund demanded cuts to spending. There were protests and riots. Blanco sent in the army to crush the protests: more than 100 people were killed, 500 wounded and thousands were put in prison. It was claimed that Blanco and other members of the government were making a lot of money through corrupt dealings with the army and military contracts.
Blanco did not stand in the 1986 election, and the new government put him on trial for corruption. He tried to gain asylum from Venezualea, but they said no. He was permitted to go the United States for medical treatment for a heart condition. While he was in the US he was found guilty of corruption and sentenced to prison for 23 years. There were many legal challenges, and he finally only spent two months in prison. In 2001 the Supreme Court ruled that the corruption charges were not true.
He died in 2010 after falling out of bed and hitting his head.
- "Salvador Jorge Blanco". guardian.co.uk. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/dec/27/salvador-jorge-blanco-obituary. Retrieved 31 December 2010.
- "Salvador Jorge Blanco, former Dominican Republic president, dies at 84". latimesblogs.latimes.com. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/afterword/2010/12/salvador-jorge-blanco-former-dominican-republic-president-dies-at-84.html. Retrieved 31 December 2010.