Colombia’s prosecutor general said the country should revoke sentencing benefits for demobilized guerrilla and paramilitary fighters if they lied under oath about the crimes they committed, local media reported Wednesday.
Prosecutor General Eduardo Montealegre pointed to at least five instances where former soldiers had lied to the country’s Supreme Court during their trials, and said his office would begin investigating to see if more false testimonies had been given.
The soldiers had demobilized under Colombia’s controversial 2005 Justice and Peace law, which provides that members of paramilitary groups can only be sentenced to a maximum of eight years in prison, in exchange for confessing their crimes and giving up arms permanently.
In 2010, the president of the National Reparation Commission announced that the law, intended to facilitate the peace process between the Colombian government and armed groups, had uncovered more than 26,000 murders since proceedings began in 2005. The law’s critics have also claimed it allowed human rights perpetrators to get off too easily.