Oscar Ivan Zuluaga, the conservative politician who almost won the 2014 elections, has left the country having been warned about his possible capture by investigating authorities.
The former president also said that prosecutors plan to file criminal charges against his two sons because of their dealings with a shady businessman.
Zuluaga has been investigated since last year because campaign employees illegally obtained classified information of ongoing peace talks, allegedly with the knowledge of the candidate himself.
Uribe said that Zuluaga will seek protection measures like the former president did in the his brother before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) in Washington.
Uribe’s brother Santiago was arrested last week for allegedly founding a paramilitary group in the early 1990s.
According to Uribe, “congressmen informed us that they planned the capture of Dr. Oscar Ivan Zuluaga.”
The political leader traveled to Washington to personally submit complaints to the IACHR regarding the lack of due process in the case against his brother, a wealthy rancher.
Zuluaga’s lawyer, Victor Mosquera, said he wants the allegations that the former presidential candidate was involved in illegally wiretapping the peace talks to qualify as “political persecution” against the opposition.
“We go to international justice to show that the defense has not been allowed access to the evidence of the prosecution against Oscar Ivan Zuluaga, nor against [fugitive campaign manager] Luis Alfonso Hoyos, especially video broadcast in past years,” said Mosquera.
The move comes amid the recent controversy surrounding the arrest of former president Uribe’s brother, Santiago, for alleged involvement in running a paramilitary death squad.
Uribe and his followers in the opposition have suggested that there is a conspiracy of political persecution at the hands of the Santos administration and the prosecutor General’s Office, currently led by Eduardo Montealegre.
Mosquera claimed that these requested measures seek to protect his client from this alleged persecution.
“The measures are aimed to protect Oscar Ivan Zuluaga, a political persecution is demonstrated under some evidence that we will not disclose, but which were already made known to the international organization,” Mosquera said.
Uribe, his family members and his allies have long claimed to be the victim of a political persecution after numerous allies were imprisoned after being found guilty on corruption charges or proven links to death squads.