Colombia’s Supreme Court is considering whether to approve U.S. extradition requests for four demobilized paramilitary leaders, following concerns that extradited paramilitaries do not participate in the Justice and Peace process.
Ex-paramilitary leaders “Juancho Dique” (an associate of Diego Vecino), “Julian Bolivar,” Freddy “Aleman” Rendon Herrera, and Daniel “Don Mario” Rendon Herrera are wanted by U.S. courts to answer to charges of drug trafficking.
Following the court’s decision on Wednesday to reject a U.S. extradition request for AUC leader “Diego Vecino”, in order to prioritize his contribution to the Justice and Peace tribunal, local media are interested in how the court will rule on future extradition requests.
There are concerns that former paramilitaries taking part in the Justice and Peace process may use their participation as a means to avoid extradition.
Colombia’s Vice President Francisco Santos has also emphasised the importance of the court’s rulings coinciding with the best interests of the Colombian government and its agreement to co-operate with the United States.
Extradition requests must receive a majority vote from the Supreme Court’s magistrates before a decision is reached on whether they are approved or rejected.