Colombian authorities last week arrested ten people, including wealthy landowners and businessmen, for financing and collaborating with a notorious wing of paramilitary coalition the AUC, which terrorized the departments of Antioquia and Choco between 1994 and 2006, reports El Tiempo.
Colombia’s inspector general ordered the arrests after years of investigation by a special unit of the police into paramilitary financing, started after mounting complaints by local people and international human rights organizations of atrocities committed by paramilitary forces.
On Tuesday, ten of the nineteen individuals found to be key financiers and collaborators in paramilitary activity in the region were arrested.
Those arrested include prominent landowners and businessmen Juan Guillermo Gonzales Moreno and Andres Vargas Montoya, who authorities claim are responsible for 500 murders and displacements, usually of farmers and union leaders, in the Antioquian municipality of Uraba.
Also arrested was Jesus Emilio Rueda, 76, who reportedly delivered to a paramilitary group a list of 200 farmers to be assassinated for their suspected collaboration with the FARC.
According to DIJIN police chief Luis Gilberto Ramirez, they are currently in their second stage of the investigation, which began in 2005.