Peru moves Berenson to Lima jail for pregnancy care

By Dana Ford

LIMA, Jan 9 (Reuters) - Lori Berenson, a U.S. citizen serving a 20-year sentence in Peru for aiding leftist guerrillas, arrived in Lima on Friday after years in remote prisons to get health care during a complicated pregnancy.

Berenson, 39, is five months pregnant. Authorities worried about her age and a back problem transferred her from a prison in Cajamarca, in the north, to one in Peru's capital, where she will stay until her baby is born.

Surrounded by police and reporters, Berenson was shuffled into a justice department building in the city's center, where officials said she will undergo a health examination before being moved to the Santa Monica women's prison.

"She has come from Cajamarca because she has health problems and because of her pregnancy," a government official said.

Berenson has been in jail for more than 13 years, many of them high in the Andes mountains.

She was arrested in 1995 on charges of being a leader of the Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement, or MRTA, a leftist insurgency that was active in Peru in the 1980s and 1990s.

A military judge jailed her for life, but under pressure from the United States, a civilian court retried her and sentenced her to 20 years. She could be paroled next year.

Berenson married former inmate Anibal Apari in 2003. In Peru, inmates are allowed conjugal visits and women who give birth in prison can keep their children with them for the first few years.

(Additional reporting by Teresa Cespedes; Editing by Terry Wade and Doina Chiacu)