Colombia’s Prosecutor General’s Office summoned former Interior and Justice Minister Sabas Pretelt de la Vega to trial to face charges that he bribed congressmen to approve the 2006 re-election run of then-President Alvaro Uribe.
With its decision to proceed with the case, the PG’s Office rejected Pretelt’s claims that his indictment is unconstitutional because it was not filed by the Prosecutor General personally, but by Vice Prosecutor General Fernando Pareja Reinmer.
The Penal Chamber of the Supreme Court will now proceed with the trial.
Pretelt is accused of having bribed former congressmen Yidis Medina and Teodolindo Avendaño to approve a constitutional change needed for Uribe’s 2006 re-election run. Both lawmakers have been convicted for accepting bribes from Pretelt and his colleague, former Health Minister Diego Palacio.
Despite the criminal charges before the Supreme Court and his conviction by Colombia’s Inspector General’s Office that bars him from holding public office for twelve years, Pretelt told W Radio that his only crime has been “being Minister in the cabinet of Alvaro Uribe” and that he has not left his post as Ambassador to Rome.