Colombia’s chief prosecutor reportedly ordered to manipulate evidence gathered by the United States’ Justice Department that links him to his former anti-corruption chief’s alleged bribery of Supreme Court magistrates.
The bombshell claim was made on Sunday by Semana columnist Daniel Coronell who received the transcripts from recordings made by the Drug Enforcement Administration.
The journalist also released audio of a prosecutor testifying under oath that Prosecutor General Nestor Humberto Martinez ordered him to manipulate the recording that was sent to the court and Congress’ Accusations Committee.
Blu Radio on Monday released the unedited DEA tapes that also appear to implicate the former boss of the special prosecutor investigating corruption practices by Brazilian engineering firm Odebrecht.
According to both Coronell and Blu Radio, the recordings are part of an ongoing DEA investigation that recently resulted in the four-year prison sentence of Martinez’ former anti-corruption chief and were sent to the Colombia’s Prosecutor General’s Office months ago.
Chief prosecutor central in both Odebrecht and Supreme Court bribery scandal?
The DEA recordings also make references to a certain Rodrigo Noguera as “the key to the chief prosecutor.”
The rector of the elite Sergio Arboleda University is called Rodrigo Noguera. The dean of that university’s law faculty recently was appointed special prosecutor to investigate Odebrecht’s bribery practices after evidence emerged indicating that Martinez and the Prosecutor General’s Office were trying to cover up the scandal.
In a different recording released by Coronell on Twitter, prosecutor Jaime Camacho is heard testifying under oath that Martinez ordered him to manipulate the DEA recordings that were sent to the Supreme Court and Congress’ Accusations Committee to investigate bribes.
Former magistrate Leonidos Bustos: Who gave the order to remove fragments from this CD that were put at the disposition of the competent authorities for the subsequent investigation?
Prosecutor Jaime Camacho: The Prosecutor General of the Republic
Martinez stubbornly refuses to resign
Martinez denied admitted manipulating the evidence in a Tweet sent out by the Prosecutor General’s Office, but claimed that he only ordered the removal of audio referring to persons that could not be investigated by the court.
One of the persons that cannot be investigated by the Supreme Court is Martinez himself. His alleged corruption can only be investigated by Congress’ Accusations Committee, which according to the Camacho tape received the same manipulated recordings.
Despite the fact that his position has become virtually untenable due to the mounting evidence of corruption, the chief prosecutor has categorically refused to resign.
The Odebrecht bribery scandal and the so-called Toga Cartel scandal are implicating some of the most powerful men in Colombia, including President Ivan Duque, and former Presidents Juan Manuel Santos and Alvaro Uribe.