Three men convicted of the 2009 murder of 12 people from Colombia’s Awa indigenous group were sentenced Tuesday to 52 years in jail, Efe reports.
Jose Miguel Castro, Daniel Cuasuluzan Rodriguez and Carlos Enrique Malpu killed the Awa people in the town of La Guayacana in the south-western department of Nariño. The three men are allegedly members of the gang “Los Cucarachos,” who according to the Ministry of Defense are engaged in extortion, kidnapping, and drug trafficking in southern Colombia.
On August 26, 2009, the three men, dressed in army fatigues, entered a house which had 18 Awa inside. They had firearms, and demanded money that was supposedly in the house. When their request was denied, the men opened fire, killing 12, including a 3-year-old child and an 8-month-old baby.
They will serve out their sentence at a jail in Pasto, Nariño.
The Awa people are facing high levels of violence, with four members of the community reportedly massacred on Thursday night in Nariño.
The motive of the murder is not yet known