A former deputy director of the DAS on Tuesday accused former President Alvaro Uribe of giving the orders that led to the wiretap scandal.
The scandal broke in 2009, as it was revealed that the DAS, the now-defunct intelligence agency, had been carrying out a campaign of wiretaps and surveillance on political opponents, the Supreme Court, human rights organizations and journalists.
Speaking before the criminal chamber of the Supreme Court, former Intelligence director Fernando Tabares said that in September 2007 he attended a meeting with then Director of the intelligence agency, Martha Leal and uribe’s chief of staff, Bernardo Moreno, in which he was told the President required intelligence regarding Supreme Court justices, congressmen and journalists.
“I was told that it was a direct order from the President of the Republic,” said Tabares when questioned by the prosecution. The head of state had requested to “be kept informed on these issues,” added the former spy chief.
Tabares continued, stating that the task of tracking and intercepting judges was “nothing unusual” at the time. He referred to the complex security situation of Colombia during this period, including the activity of illegal armed groups and the demobilization of paramilitaries.
“An intelligence agency should have knowledge of that happened in the country and abroad,” argued the former director.
Tabares was sentenced to eight years in prison for his involvement in illegal interceptions and surveillance after signing a preliminary agreement with the prosecution on charges of aggravated conspiracy , malfeasance through action , abuse of public office and violation unlawful communications.
The DAS was disbanded by President Juan Manuel Santos in 2011.