Carlos Eugenio Vides Casanova (b. 1937) was appointed in 1979 to the position of director of the National Guard for a period of four years. Casanova led the department of the Salvadoran security forces responsible for the killing of four U.S. churchwomen in 1980 (see Ford v. Garcia). He replaced General Jose Guillermo García as Minister of Defense in 1984 and held this post until 1988. He immigrated to the United States in 1989, and is currently a legal permanent resident. The U.N. Truth Commission Report on El Salvador found that Vides Casanova knew about the National Guardsmen who had committed the murders, and participated in the cover-up of the facts that obstructed the investigation.
General Jose Guillermo García (b. 1933) graduated in 1962 from The School of the Americas. He later became the Minister of Defense in El Salvador from 1979 to 1983. García was in charge of the military forces responsible for the infamous El Mozote and Sumpul River massacres where over 1367 civilians were killed. He was also the Minister of Defense when the revered Archbishop Oscar Romero was assassinated and blocked any attempts at an investigation. In 1989, he retired to Florida after receiving political asylum in the United States. On February 23, 2009, the U.S. Department of Justice charged General García with two counts of immigration fraud. If convicted, García faces up to ten years in prison for using a passport procured illegally and up to five years for making a materially false statement to a federal officer. According to the indictment, the defendant used a falsely obtained Salvadoran passport at Miami International Airport in an attempt to enter the United States – after his genuine passport had already been confiscated by U.S. authorities for undisclosed reasons. Garcia later lied to federal officials regarding the provenance of the passport.