BUCHAREST, Romania -- A devoted aide of ex-Romanian leader Nicolae Ceausescu who was sent to quell protests that sparked the 1989 revolution has died. He was 87.
Emil Bobu died from a heart attack Saturday at a Bucharest hospital, spokesman Leonard Grecescu told The Associated Press on Sunday.
In December 1989, Ceausescu sent Bobu to Timisoara to stamp out an uprising. He failed and days later, he accompanied Ceausescu on a helicopter as he fled angry crowds in Bucharest. Ceausescu and his wife Elena were executed that month.
During his 45-year career, Bobu served as a military prosecutor, interior minister and labor minister.
In 1990, he was sentenced to prison for complicity to genocide, later downgraded to complicity in aggravated manslaughter. He was released in 1993 on health grounds.