Officials ordered the transfer of a high-ranking former member of Colombia’s most infamous paramilitary group into formal prison Friday, local media reported.
Salomon Feris Chadid, alias “08”, was arrested in 2008 on charges of aggravated conspiracy, but was allowed to live under house arrest, supposedly due to an advanced case of diabetes that left him wheelchair-bound.
The viability of the house arrest sentence was recently called into question, however, as reports emerged of the ex-paramilitary being permitted to leave his home and spend time in the local community, according to the El Tiempo newspaper.
As a result, the Inspector General’s Office ordered his transfer to formal prison Friday.
The judge who ruled in favor of the request for house arrest is now reportedly being investigated by the Disciplinary Chamber of the Superior Judicial Council, and there have been suggestions that corruption was involved in the original leniency.
Chadid was a well-known righthand man to leaders of the AUC paramilitary umbrella group, including Carlos Castano and Salvatore Mancuso, during the 1990s.
FACT SHEET: AUC
Chadid was also influential in the failed peace talks between paramilitary groups and the government of President Alvaro Uribe in 2002.
There are unconfirmed reports that Chadid was the mastermind behind a massacre in the village of Pichilin, Morroa, in northern Colombia, according to El Universal, and his criminal record is believed to extend well-beyond his formal charges.
Chadid’s transfer order came just days before another former AUC member, alias “Cesarin,” was recaptured after having escaped his own 20-year house arrest sentence.