Colombian congressman Wilson Arias has received personal death threats by people who believe that the congressman has harmed the agricultural industry by denouncing politicians’ role in land theft scandals, he told media Sunday.
Congressman Wilson Arias, member of the leftist Polo Democratico party, received death threats via text from anonymous people for allegedly harming the agricultural industry in the eastern farmlands of Colombia.
“This is serious, and we are very concerned. They want to exterminate us for making the complaints that showed everyone what was going on. We hope that the government does something. I have a security team that is very precarious for the magnitude of [threatening] texts I have received,” the congressman explained to Caracol Radio.
The death threats come after Arias and Senator Jorge Roblado unveiled corrupt land deals this summer involving irregularities in the purchase of vacant land in the eastern plains of Colombia in the Vichada Department. Large companies including the leading sugar production company in Colombia, RioPaila Castilla, international agro-company Cargill, and Colombia’s richest man were implicated and lost previously held land deals.
The investigation that the two congressmen conducted also led to the resignation of the Colombian ambassador to the US whose law firm is said to have advised the above companies in the illegal acquisition of vacant land.
The director of Colombia’s National Protection Unit, Andres Villamizar,responded to Arias’ concerns that his office would analyze the lawmakers’ case on Thursday to see if additional security is required.