The mayor and former mayor of Neiva, a town in the south-west Colombian Huila department, are under investigation for allegedly embezzling more than $1 million in oil royalties, Noticias Uno reported Monday.
Current Mayor Anibal Ramirez and former Mayor Cielo Gonzales, who is running in the Huila departmental elections, will answer the the Prosecutor General’s Office on accusations of illicitly investing oil royalties into the Toro Investment Group, a American oil drilling company.
Prosecutors have charged the officials with embezzlement, signing false contracts, and falsifying documents. The proceedings, which will take place between February 3 and 9, will determine why the government officials invested public funds in the oil company without their actions being sanctioned by the Financial Superintendent of Colombia.
The Comptroller General will decide later this week whether to remove the Ramirez from office pending the findings of the investigation.