Luis Carlos Restrepo will not return to Colombia in the near future, wanting full guarantees of his safety before he does, his lawyer told RCN Radio.
Restrepo is a protected person, and will not appear in front of court until certain guarantees of his safety are put in place by President Santos’ government, stated his lawyer Mildred Hartmann.
“There is no court order for compassion to justice in Colombia,” Hartmann said.
Government officials have asked for Restrepo to return to Colombia, and have assured him of his safety if he does. The former official released a letter March 29 condemning the government for treating him like “a criminal” without adequate proof.
Restrepo does not feel compelled to return to Colombia, as he enjoys international protection and an Interpol warrant for his arrest was lifted by a Bogota judge March 23.
“At this time, Dr Restrepo is a protected person because he is at risk, and is not subject to any court order to appear in Colombia,” said Hartmann.
The former minister fled the country January 8 before he was to appear at a hearing over allegations that he was responsible for the false demobilization of a non-existent FARC unit in 2006. He allegedly conspired with a drug trafficker and an ex-guerrillan to pay homeless people to train and act like rebels before turning themselves over to authorities.
It is believed he fled to the United States but his whereabouts remain unknown.