The fine for violating Colombia’s quarantine is $230 (COP935,320), unless President Ivan Duque thinks you’re mean and trumped up charges could send you to prison for eight years.
In chief prosecutor Francisco Barbosa’s arguably most absurd show of force, the Prosecutor General’s Office announced it would investigate Bogota Mayor Claudia Lopez for walking her dog with her wife.
Both Lopez and her wife, Angelica Lozano, admitted having violated the quarantine that allows only one person per household to walk the dog for 20 minutes.
“The rules exist to be complied with fully,” Lozano said on Twitter on Sunday, showing a picture of her signing off on the fine.
But that was not enough for Barbosa, who left Twitter after he was implicated in a plot to rig the 2018 elections in favor of his best friend and all but lost legitimacy last month.
Instead of imposing a fine, the prosecution pulled out Article 368 from Colombia’s police code that allows a prison sentence between four to eight years for those who violate measures to “prevent the introduction or spread of an epidemic.”
“The Prosecutor General’s Office makes this information public for reasons of public interest,” the prosecution said.
Bogota’s mayor is one of the fiercest critics of Duque and the drug trafficking organization who allegedly helped the dynasty politician get elected.
Lopez responded that “I humbly admit the violation of going to the supermarket with Angelica, I offer my apologies,” adding that “my disputes with the president should not be resolved by the Prosecutor General’s Office.”
Also before being implicated in the 2018 election rigging plot, Barbosa’s politicized interpretation of justice and ineffectiveness to effectively fight crime had already destroyed much of his perceived integrity.
Colombia hasn’t had a chief prosecutor who hasn’t been accused of having ties to organized crime since 1998.