Arnulfo Sanchez Gonzalez, alias “Pablo,” the former commander of the Wayuu Counterinsurgency Front of the AUC, was handed the sentence by the Criminal Court of Riohacha, in the capital of the department. The coastal Caribbean department is the home of the indigenous Wayuu community.
Between April 18 and 20, 2004, men from Sanchez Gonzalez’s paramilitary group massacred five civilians after violently entering the villages of Bahia Portete and Bahia Honda. The troops then set fire to dwellings in the settlements causing the displacement of hundreds of villagers.
Sanchez Gonzalez plead guilty and accepted the charges of aggravated murder, conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery, forced disappearance, attempted murder, torture and forced displacement.
For pleading guilty he received a 50% reduction in his sentence. Sanchez Gonzalez has been incarcerated in Bogota’s La Picota jail since November 2010.