A court ordered the reinstatement of Colombian Police Lieutenant William Viasus Thursday after he was removed from office five years ago for being gay.
The judge ruled that the police and Ministry of Defense will have to pay the salary, bonuses, and benefits that Viasus would have received from his job for the last five years and also that he be given the opportunity to receive training needed for promotion.
Viasus was the head commander of a police station and squadron, and recieved 45 awards during his service, but was stripped of his position after his superiors discovered he was gay.
Viasus was supported by the testimony of one of his superiors in his trial, who declared before the judge that two high-ranking officials in Cordoba had investigated Lieutenant Viasus because of his sexual orientation.
“I am satisfied with the ruling that I can return to my position, and once again put on my olive green uniform” said the Lieutenant, who feels that his return to the force is a matter of dignity.
Viasus is one of the first male police officers to speak publicly about his sexual orientation: “I didn’t want to live my life like most gay men in the force and carry on a double life: married with children. No, I wanted an honest life” Viasus told El Tiempo.