United States prosecutors are investigating the alleged ties of a former commander of the Colombian army with paramilitary death squads, newspaper El Espectador reports, newspaper El Espectador reported Sunday.
According to the newspaper, the U.S. officials are investigating retired General Mario Montoya, who has regularly been accused of having collaborated with paramilitary organization AUC and was forced to resign when Colombian judicial authorities began investigating the death of some 3,000 Colombian civilians who had been reported as guerrillas killed in combat by army forces.
Other generals who the U.S. reportedly suspects of having ties to paramilitary groups are the former commander of the National Police, General Jorge Daniel Castro, and former Medellin police commanders General Ruben Carrillo and general Luis Alfredo Rodriguez.
Newspaper El Tiempo reported on the alleged investigation into the three police generals last week, but did not publish the names of the suspects.
According to El Espectador, the prosecution of the Eastern District Court of Virginia is also investigating a number of politicians from Antioquia who may have dealt with Medellin crime syndicate “Oficina de Envigado” and AUC blocks Metro, Mineros, Heroes de Granada and Cacique Nutibara.
Apart from testimonies by Mauricio Santoyo, who was Uribe’s security chief while leaking information to the AUC, prosecutors reportedly intend to use testimonies by former paramilitary commanders and drug lords who are held in U.S. prisons.
All military officials have served in Medellin and are considered close allies of Uribe, who increasingly has seen political and military allies be put behind bars over their alleged or proven ties to the paramilitary AUC.
The former president, who also has regularly been accused of having collaborated with the Medellin cartel of Pablo Escobar and the AUC has denied any involvement with illegal armed groups and the alleged or proven illegal activities of his aides.
The AUC was formed by former dissident members of the Medellin cartel in the 1990s when Uribe was governor of Antioquia.