National Police officers José María Sánchez García and Manuel Jódar Cabrera, and Basque police officer Luis Hortelano García in Bilbao were killed by ETA at 8.10 am on the morning of 24 May 1989. The method used was a car bomb. The officers were members of the bomb disposal units of their respective forces. The three policemen were killed when a bomb hidden in a jerry can exploded. It had been planted in the boot of a stolen taxi and contained 20 kilos of ammonia, 40 kilos of shrapnel and a pentrite multiplier. The attack had been carefully prepared by the terrorist organization to make it difficult to defuse the car bomb and to ensure that there would be victims.
Luis Hortelano García was 33 years old. He was married and had two children. He was from Bilbao. He had joined the National Police Force in 1982, leaving four years later to join the Ertzaintza (Basque regional police force). Manuel Jódar Cabrera was from Rubite, Granada, and was 35 years old. He was married and also had two children. He joined the National Police Force in 1975. Manuel Jódar’s family had to leave the Basque Country after nine years of harassment. José María Sánchez García was from Galinduste in Salamanca. He was 34 years old and married. He had two children: a girl of five and a boy of four.