Colombia’s attorney general resigns over court refusal to extradite FARC leader
16 May 2019

Colombia’s attorney general said on Wednesday he resigned in protest after a special court charged with prosecuting war crimes denied a U.S. extradition request for a former FARC leader accused of drug trafficking.

The Special Jurisdiction for Peace (JEP) tribunal prosecutes leaders of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerrillas, who demobilized under a 2016 peace deal, as well as military officials for crimes committed during the country’s five-decade internal conflict.

The JEP earlier on Wednesday ordered the release of Seuxis Paucias Hernandez, better known by his war alias Jesus Santrich, saying evidence provided by prosecutors did not allow the court to evaluate whether or when he allegedly conspired to move cocaine to the United States.

Because the JEP has jurisdiction over all crimes which took place during the war, Hernandez’s extradition can only go ahead if the alleged crime took place after the accord, placing it within the remit of the regular justice system.

Hernandez was indicted over a year ago by a U.S. grand jury for conspiracy to export 10 tonnes of cocaine, worth $320 million in street value.

By Luis Jaime Acosta, Julia Symmes Cobb and Helen Murphy, Reuters, 15 May 2019

Read more at Reuters

Photo: Boris Arenas [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons

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