On the afternoon of 2 August 1985, Juan María Otegui Elicegui left work in the French town of Saint Martin d’Arossa and got into his vehicle to return home. At around 5.30 pm, as he was driving along a secondary road through Ascarat, a motorcycle approached the car and one of the two occupants began shooting. He was hit three times, once close to the heart. He was taken to hospital where he died an hour and a half later.
Juan María Otegui Elicegui, alias Txato, was living in Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port (French Basque Country) with his wife and daughter and worked in a furniture cooperative. He had fled Spain, where he was alleged to have been a member of ETA militar and to have been involved in the killing of at least six people.