Colombia’s Prosecutor General on Wednesday formally accused former peace commissioner Luis Carlos Restrepo of falsifying reports of the demobilization of a bloc of rebel group FARC in 2006.
After the announcement in Colombia’s capital city Bogota, Restrepo, along with seven others, is now facing charges of embezzlement, misappropriation, fraud, manufacturing and possession of firearms and ammunition, and general malfeasance, surrounding the falsely reported demobilization of a FARC bloc in 2006.
Though the former peace commissioner fled the country in 2012 before an arrest warrant was officially issued, the current international warrant for his arrest was just widened in scope due to the formal charges. Restrepo is expected to return to Colombia to face trial according to media outlet CM&.
According to the Prosecutor General’s office, Restrepo could face a minimum of 20 years for falsifying the demobilization in question.
In 2006 just before the presidential elections that gave former President Alvaro Uribe his second term in office, alleged guerrillas belonging to the ‘Cacica Gaitana’ bloc of the FARC under the supposed command of ‘Biofilo” were pronounced, demobilized by the army. ‘Biofilo’ was photographed handing over a machete, rifle and computer to Restrepo, and the alleged commander was quoted saying, “We hope that the government recognizes this significant gesture.”
The situation was later confirmed to be a hoax constructed in part by Restrepo and the alleged guerrillas were mainly homeless people who were hired by another organizer.
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This demobilization would have been one of the most significant victories against the FARC during Uribe’s presidency according to newspaper El Pais.