The half-brother of Colombia’s former Inspector General has admitted to concealing the 2001 murders of two trade unionists by paramilitaries, reported Colombian media Tuesday.
Appearing in front of the Supreme Court, Jaime Blanco Maya conceded that he knew about the planned murders of unionists who were leading action against U.S. energy company Drummond, for which Maya was a contractor.
“I did not kill, but I knew it was going to happen,” said Maya, who also admitted to concealing the murders of Valmore Locamo Rodriguez and Victor Hugo Orcasita, carried out by the Northern Bloc of the AUC paramilitary organization.
Maya, who is related to Colombia’s 2001-2009 Inspector General Edgardo Maya Villazon, was said by prosecutors to have close links to the Northern Bloc and specifically to its former leader Charris Castro, who was convicted in 2009 for his part in the crime.
The murders brought about several lawsuits against Drummond and hampered the progress of the U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement, which only came into force late last year.
Maya, who was captured in September 2010, is likely to have a potential 40-year sentence commuted down to 20 years as a result of his guilty plea.
Paramilitary commander Jose Ospina Oscar Pacheco, alias “Tolemaida,” with whom Maya is also linked, was last year handed a 30-year prison sentence for carrying out the murders.