Colombia extradited FARC guerrilla Roque Orobio Lobon to the U.S. where he will appear before a federal court in New York charged with participating in the kidnapping of an American citizen in Panama, reports EFE.
Orobio Lobon, alias “Melo” and “Tachuela,” was arrested in Colombia in March 2009 and is accused in the U.S. of planning and executing the kidnapping of a U.S. businessman in Panama City in 2008, with twelve other guerrillas, “under the direction of the FARC’s 57th Front.”
“Roque Orobio planned and carried out the kidnapping of a U.S. citizen for one of the most violent factions of the FARC,” said New York prosecutor Preet Bharara.
Cuban-American businessman Cecilio Padron was kidnapped by the FARC in the Costa del Este neighborhood of Panama City on April 4 2008.
The guerrilla group told Padron’s family that they would never see their loved one again if a ransom wasn’t paid, and the businessman was finally released in February 2009, after his family complied with the FARC’s demands.
Guerrillas Edilberto Berrio Ortiz, alias “el Gavilán”, Alejandro Palacios Rengifo, alias “el Gato,” and Anderson Champuro Dogirama, alias “el Tigre,” are also charged with two counts of kidnapping, which can lead to a life sentence.