Several generals in Colombia’s armed forced are being investigated for their past involvement in the “false positives” scandal in which thousands of innocent civilians were murdered by state agents to up their body counts.
In a revived debate over the expansion of military jurisdiction, critics argue that handing over the prosecution of the false positive cases from civilian to military courts could lead to impunity for the more than 3,000 cases – with more than 4,000 victims – that have occurred since 1986.
FACT SHEET: False positives
Along with members of Congress, these criticisms have been expressed by the United Nations and prominent international human rights groups.
Leftist opposition Senator Alirio Uribe has been a strong opponent of the military justice reform. In late October, he presented a list in Congress of nine generals who are allegedly involved in hundreds of cases of false positives. Another Senate debate on the topic is scheduled for Wednesday.
While nearly 5,000 state agents have been implicated – mostly military – around 780 have been convicted. Not a single general has been convicted.
However, according to Uribe, the following generals have yet to respond for extrajudicial killings committed under their command.
Brigadier General Nicasio de Jesus Martinez
False positive cases: 100
Martinez is the current commander of the 5th Division. He commanded the 10th Brigade from 2004-2006 the states of Cesar and la Guajira where the false positives occurred.
Major General Jaime Lasprilla
False positive cases: 94
Villamiar is the current commander of the Army. He led the 9th Brigade in the state of Huila from 2006-2007 during which the false positives occurred.
Brigadier General Henry William Torres
False positive cases: 85
He is currently the commander of Joint Command N° 2 of the Southwest. From 2005 to 2007 he led the 16th Brigade in the state of Casanare where the false positives occurred.
Major General Hernan Giraldo
False positive cases: 77
Restrepo is the head of the advisory board in Washington on the topic of human rights. He was a commander in the 10th Brigade in the states of Cesar and la Guajira between 2004 and 2006 when the false positives occurred.
Brigadier General Jorge Enrique Navarrete
False positive cases: 60
Navarrete is the commander of the 7th Brigade. He was commander of the cavalry mechanized group II Rondon from 2004-2006 and the 8th Brigade from 2007-2008 when the false positives occurred.
General Juan Pablo Rodriguez
False positive cases: 37
Rodriguez is the General Commander of the Armed Forces. Between 2002-2004 he was the commander of the Operative Command 7 in the state of Cesar and la Guajira when the false positives occurred.
Brigadier General Emiro Jose Barrios
False positive cases: 29
He is the commander of the Tarea Jupiter Force of the 6th Division. Between 2006-2009 he was the head of Command number 3 and the 8th Brigade when the false positives occurred.
Brigadier General Juan Carlos Piza
False positive cases: 20
He is the commander of the 4th Brigade in Antioquia where between September-December of 2007 the investigations for the false positives began.
Brigadier General German Saavedra
False positive cases: 1
Prado is the coordinator of the Humanitarian Attention Group for the Demobilized. He was the commander of the 10th Brigade in the states of Cesar and la Guajira between 2010-2011 when the false positive occurred.