Colombian authorities on Thursday released the detained brother of a notorious paramilitary leader serving a lengthy jail sentence in the US on the grounds that the investigation into his case has been “doubled up” and investigated by two separate entities, according to local media.
Fernando Cesar Mancuso, alias “Bird,” who was the third close relative of former AUC paramilitary leader Salvatore Mancuso to be captured by the authorities this year, was arrested in Cordoba two weeks ago on charges of conspiracy to commit murder in connection with the death of union leader Oscar Dario Soto in 2001.
Thursday, however, saw Fernando Mancuso’s detainment overturned on the grounds that a person cannot be tried twice by two different entities, according to Colombia’s El Universal newspaper.
“These crimes are being investigated by two judicial departments, one in Bogota and another in Monteria, and [Mancuso’s] liberty was authorized due to the doubled up investigations,” said Mancuso’s lawyer Nelson Menjura.
Fernando Mancuso’s release comes in the wake of statements from his extradited brother Salvatore Mancuso who claims there is a supposed “judicial persecution” against his family in order to exclude him from the 2006 Justice and Peace Law, according to the same source.
Fernando Manusco was initially arrested along with four lawyers who have all been linked to more than 18 murders and the notorious Cordoba block AUC paramilitary group.
- En libertad el hermano de Salvatore Mancuso (El Universal)