Eight Colombian soldiers are accused of murdering three street vendors in 2003 and reporting them as members of a criminal band.
On 26 April 2006, Juan Francisco Parra Santamaria, Elkin Alexander Correa Valencia and Einer Jonatan Muñoz were murdered and presented as members of a group of extortioners.
According to Colombia’s Prosecutor of National Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law, the soldiers from the army’s 4th Brigade murdered the vendors and placed three grenades, a rifle and a hand-gun at the scene of murder to make it seems as if the men were carrying them.
Family members of the victims deny that the men had ties to illegal groups.
“False positives” refers to the extrajudicial killings of civilians by members of the army, which are then reported as combat deaths. Figures release in 2009 by NGOs estimate that around 1,000 people have been killed by the army in this way, a figure which the Colombian government has not denied.
On Monday, six military were detained over a separate ‘false positive’ case.