Charles Horman was an American journalist who was murdered after the coup d'etat led by Augusto Pinochet in Chile on September 11, 1973. Greek filmmaker Costas-Garvas directed the 1982 film Missing which was based on his case.
Born and raised in New York City, Horman graduated from Harvard University in 1964. After working for some time in the US media, he moved temporarily to Chile working as a freelance writer. Up until the time of the military takeover, he was in the resort town of Viña del Mar, near the port of Valparaíso. He spoke with several US operatives who were supporting the Chilean military, documenting the role of the United States government in the overthrow of Salvador Allende.
On September 17, 1973, he was arrested and taken by Chilean soldiers to the National Stadium in Santiago which had been turned into an ad hoc concentration camp. His family was unsuccessful in their attempts to find out what happened to him, as US embassy officials did not give them any information about his disappearance and death.
In 1976, the Horman family, represented by the Center for Constitutional Rights sued Henry Kissinger and other Nixon Administration officials for Charles' wrongful death. Thomas Hauser wrote a book titled The Execution of Charles Horman: An American Sacrifice which was published in 1978. It was published again in 1982 under the title 'Missing', the same year that the Hollywood film by Costas-Gavras was released. Nathaniel Davis, who was the US ambassador to Chile from 1971 - 1973, filed a $150 million libel suit against against Universal Studios.
In 1999, many documents were declassified, which strongly implicate the Central Intelligence Agency and State Department in Horman's death.