Photo: Eduardo Miranda
DEA documents indicate that during the government of Alvaro Uribe several staff supported the drug trafficking activities of the paramilitary United Self Defense Forces of Colombia, the Office of Envigado criminal group and the Norte del Valle Cartel. One of those identified by the U.S. agency is General Oscar Naranjo, who the PRI candidate Enrique Peña Nieto appointed security advisor in case Mexico.The chairing Colombian General Oscar Adolfo Naranjo Trujillo, whom Enrique Peña Nieto announced as the next security adviser, should become President of Mexico had relations with drug traffickers and paramilitaries of his country and was involved in bribery and other corruption.
MEXICO CITY (Process). – This was established in documents U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA, for its acronym in English) made from interrogations of former leaders of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC), who stated that politicians and officials close to President Alvaro Uribe (2002-2010) gave them support for their military and drug trafficking.
Salvatore Mancuso Gómez, one of the former leaders of the AUC, extradited to the U.S. in 2008 on charges of drug trafficking, went further and told the DEA that Juan Manuel Santos, the defense minister and the government of Colombian President Uribe participated in a plot to overthrow in 1995 the then president Ernesto Samper. He explained that this conspiracy resulted in the murder of politician Alvaro Gomez Hurtado and said even at that murder “were involved” Gen. Naranjo and one of his officers, Danilo González Gil.
DEA agents also questioned Rafael Garcia, and former official of the Administrative Department of Security (DAS), Colombia’s intelligence agency.
Garcia revealed that Jorge Noguera Cotes, DAS director from 2002 to 2005, provided logistical support and infrastructure of the institution to which the AUC traficaran drugs into the U.S. through Mexico and Venezuela and even Noguera himself “was responsible for initial contacts “with the Beltran Leyva cartel.
The memoranda of the DEA has copies of Process-are intended to document “corruption of public officials in Colombia.” Are dated between March 2010 and March 2011, and are addressed to Jay Bergman, regional director of the Division of the DEA Andes, whose offices are in Bogotá.
In the package of documents there is also a “research report” dated August 4, 2009. It was developed by members of the DEA office in New York.
All of them are names of officials, military and police chiefs, legislators and businessmen allegedly linked to the activities of the AUC. In fact, when DEA agents asked Mancuso on political corruption in Colombia, he replied that “according to its own estimates of the AUC over 35% of the congressmen elected in 2002 had some link, financial or other “, with that organization.
According to a DEA memo dated March 25, 2010, Mancuso reported that in 1997 the police arrested him along with Rodrigo Tovar Pupo, commander of the Northern Bloc of the AUC, because they were in possession of automatic weapons and grenades. The police temporarily detained in a prison in the department of La Guajira. Sought help from Carlos Castaño, then top leader of the AUC.
“Then, ‘says the report, Brown called the (at that time) head of the National Police of Colombia, Gen. Rosso Jose Serrano Cadena, and asked for help. Serrano turn called Oscar Naranjo with instructions to get out of jail and Tovar Pupo Mancuso. This (Naranjo) meanwhile sent Colonel Danilo Gonzalez Gil, who rented a plane that took him to La Guajira in order to resolve the legal situation (the paramilitaries). Both were released after paying a bribe. “
As part of the so-called Justice and Peace process, which allowed the demobilization of the paramilitaries in return for reducing their penalties for their crimes, including killings of civilians, Mancuso appeared in 2006 and 2007 to Colombian prosecutors. According to the memorandum of the DEA, Mancuso said that when these hearings Naranjo began before the media described him as “a liar” and that the general himself “instructed Diego Murillo Bejarano, Don Berna (drug dealer, head of the criminal organization of Envigado and then one of the spokesmen of the AUC), to be silent “Mancuso.
At that time Don Berna and Mancuso were in the same prison in the town of Itagui, Antioquia. According to the document, the first told the second “to keep quiet about corruption in the police or they could hurt your family.” Mancuso said that as a result of his statements “were assassination attempts against his family, while the Colombian government withdrew security devices protecting” to it.
Mancuso told the DEA that the police Col. Danilo Gonzalez-a who described “Naranjo favorite son” – “used to be seen in meetings with members of the North Valle Cartel”, which came even “with his police uniform.”
Gonzalez was in junior Naranjo National Police of Colombia and close associate of the DEA. He was killed in March 2004 in a law office mafia bosses. By this time the government of Colombia had discharged in the police and U.S. authorities had framed for its relations with the North Valley Cartel.
The memorandum notes that when DEA agents Mancuso asked “who else could verify his claims about police corruption”, he responded that Don Berna and Luis Gomez Bustamante, Scratch-another former leader of the AUC also extradited to the United -States, “were aware of the widespread corruption of General Naranjo”. He even said that “the relationship between Bustamante and Gomez Naranjo began when both were members of Los Pepes, a paramilitary group created to assassinate members and relatives of Pablo Escobar Gaviria.”
According to the document, Mancuso recalled that in 2003 the police arrested in Bogota Alberto Agredo drug trafficker. He said that while he was in police custody, Murillo Bejarano sent his then deputy Carlos Echeverri with Naranjo Aguilar and paid “$ 500,000 as a bribe to let him go (Agredo)”. He stated that “Agredo was arrested on two other occasions with the sole purpose of blackmail.”
Another DEA memo, also dated March 25, 2010, to review the interrogation Carlos Mario Jimenez Naranjo, Macaco, former member of the Norte del Valle Cartel, commander of the Central Bolivar Bloc of the AUC from 1998 to 2006 and extradited to United States in 2008 for drug trafficking.
Macaco told DEA agents that Wilber Varela, head of the Norte del Valle Cartel, was “long associated” with Naranjo. Varela himself stated that “once told him he had purchased eight cellular interception devices and gave three of them to Dijin (Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Interpol) so used the General Naranjo”.
Varela was killed in Merida, Venezuela, in January 2008. After his death, and amid diplomatic tensions between Bogota and Caracas, Ramon Rodriguez Chacin, Minister of Popular Power for Interior and Justice of Venezuela, offered on March 4 of that year a press conference in which he accused the government Colombia being the murder.
He showed a computer that investigators found in Venezuela where Varela died and that would have belonged. He said he had information on that computer that established “consanguineous and affinal ties, more than that, business” between the drug dealer and Naranjo. He added that Varela “was killed before he capturáramos not to reveal important information” (Proceso 1859).
During interrogation he was subjected by the DEA, Salvatore Mancuso said Juan Manuel Santos, former Minister of Defense of the Uribe government and current president of Colombia, “maintained ties with the AUC and cocaine traffickers.”Moreover, Santos said “was involved in planning a military coup against the administration of (Ernesto) Samper” (1994-1998).
The memo said the DEA’s March 25, 2010 stands:
“Mancuso said Santos and the rest of the oligarchy of Bogota were upset by the corruption and inefficiency of the Samper administration and decided to join forces with the Norte del Valle Cartel and the AUC in order to replace a politician Samper popular choice (…)
“Interim President Alvaro Gomez Hurtado should be. Mancuso said that Santos and the rest of the conspirators wanted information about bribes that the Norte del Valle Cartel had paid Samper administration and that this information and the support of the Colombian military they destabilize the Samper government, which would replace by an interim government headed by Gómez Hurtado. “
The document continues: “Mancuso said Santos and 20 other people were flown to the city of Monteria, in the department of Cordoba, and then took a helicopter belonging to Luis Hernando Gomez Bustamante (aka Scratch, a major cartel kingpins North Valley) that transported them to San Pedro de Urabá, Antioquia, where they planned the coup. Unfortunately for the conspirators, was that Gomez Hurtado declined to be president and threatened to expose the plan. According to Mancuso, Danilo González Gil and Naranjo were involved in the murder of Gomez Hurtado to cover the conspiracy. “
Gómez Hurtado was deputy, senator and three-time candidate for President of Colombia. His murder occurred on November 2, 1995 as he was leaving the premises of the University Sergio Arboleda.
Actually Mancuso’s statements to the DEA on Santos involvement in a plot to overthrow Samper not new. We had made the May 15, 2007 before tax of Colombia, during the Justice and Peace process. Only then did not mention that the plot would have resulted in the death of Gomez Hurtado.
According to a note published Caracol Radio in May 2007, Santos, then defense minister, denied allegations that Gomez Bustamante made against him in the Justice and Peace process. Admitted Samper wanted to leave the government, but never proposed overthrow.
But this alleged plot, for illegal wiretapping scandal by the intelligence services and the police have made statements that strained relations with Venezuela, in May of that year the opposition parties to the government of Uribe and Radical Change Party (Uribe coalition) in the Colombian Congress proposed a motion of censure against Santos. On June 13 of that year, Congress rejected the motion because backtracked Radical Change.
As Semana magazine published on January 20, 2010, Gomez-Bustamante extradited to the United States in July 2007 – told a Colombian-American judicial commission that former President Samper and his Interior Minister Horacio Serpa, allegedly masterminding Gómez Hurtado’s death and that Colonel Danilo Gonzalez allegedly used two noncommissioned officers of the National Police you trust to commit the murder. Both Serpa Samper denied any involvement in the killing and described the statements of Gomez Bustamante of “fantasy”.
In interviews with the DEA, Mancuso and Jimenez Naranjo noted that several close aides to former President Uribe took money from the AUC and drug trafficking organizations in exchange for offering support.
One of them, retired Gen. Mauricio Velasco Santoyo, Uribe Security chief from 2002 to 2005.
Santoyo said Naranjo Jiménez received a “salary” of the AUC and a brother-this was the security chief drug trafficker Daniel Barrera Barrera, El Loco Barrera.
Another questioned by the DEA, Francisco Florez Upegui, Don Pancho, former leader of the Office of Envigado-Santoyo said had links to the Office of Envigado and Peter Gallon Henao-linked drug trafficking activities “had access to corrupt officials at the highest level in the Colombian police, which received ‘special favors’ through Santoyo “.
These statements to the DEA in March and May 2010, respectively, apparently were unfounded: the Colombian press reported that on Monday February Santoyo DEA gave the agency’s hangar at the military airport in Bogota. The reason: faces drug trafficking charges in federal court in Alexandria, Virginia.
According to the U.S. indictment, the AUC and the Office of Envigado paid kickbacks to Montoya for it to assist in drug trafficking operations and hand them operational intelligence on the DEA and Colombian authorities.
Oscar Rodriguez, Santoyo lawyer, said he “pleaded guilty” during a hearing on Friday 13 in federal court in Alexandria, as published on Wednesday 18 Colombian newspaper El Espectador.
The cartel of the three letters
A “research report” prepared by the DEA office in New York, dated August 4, 2009, accounts for interrogation made by members of that agency to Rafael Garcia, head of the Information Systems DAS September 2002 to January 2005.The interrogation took place in Montevideo, Uruguay, from 28 to 30 July 2009.
According to that document, Garcia said during the 2002 presidential election “Raul Montoya Flores, a wealthy businessman who was a friend of Gilberto Molina, former member of the Medellin Cartel during the nineties, provided large amounts of money to finance the presidential campaign” of Uribe. He argued that “Molina bank accounts were used to pay for the murder of the editor of the newspaper The Spectator, Guillermo Cano”.
Garcia noted that in 2002 when Uribe won the presidential election, he appointed as director Jorge Noguera Cotes DAS. The request made by Sergio Araujo Castro, figurehead commander of the Northern Bloc of the AUC, Rodrigo Tovar Pupo, Jorge 40. At that time Garcia Noguera appointed head of the Information Systems DAS.
Garcia said his job was to “support the AUC”, which included obtaining intelligence secrets and manipulate or alter judicial information to benefit the AUC and major traffickers. He said that to do this, the DAS was supported by collaborators located within several legal entities of the Colombian government.
For example: “The overall exprocurador then ambassador of Colombia in Mexico, Juan Camilo Osorio, the DAS provided information on seizures of assets that were outstanding arrest warrants and extradition requests, which facilitated the task of altering DAS delete files or criminals. “
Garcia said that the then Colonel Mauricio Velasco Santoyo, Uribe’s security chief, was “receiver” of information obtained illegally by the DAS and sometimes he requested the agency will “investigate individuals which were subsequently subjected to threats of death or attempts on their lives. “
Garcia said that the AUC provided information about an operation against the National Police of Colombia would make in the department of Magdalena. This corporation realized and began investigating. At that time the DAS received information about an operation against the AUC should inform them: The Operation Cyclone, which would carry out the Anti-Money Laundering Unit of the Attorney General’s Office. Garcia declined to provide information to the paramilitary organization. He confessed that he feared for his safety and that of your family. Noguera talked to his boss.
“Noguera told Garcia that President Uribe and Attorney Osorio had knowledge of everything that they (Noguera and Garcia) were doing and made an appointment with the president in which he approved the release of secret information,” the report rests DEA.
He adds, “Garcia gave the information to the AUC, which resulted in the failure of Operation Cyclone”.
Garcia said that in 2003 Noguera created an underground group to infiltrate Venezuela and provide support for the Democratic Bloc (BD), President Chavez opposition organization. He said the BD allowed clandestine group that used Venezuelan territory and coastal areas to traffic drugs in exchange for support of the DAS and the AUC to overthrow Chávez.
Garcia said the DAS became known as “the cartel of the three letters” because, in its support to the AUC, was directly involved in drug trafficking.
He told: “The narcotics were being transported from Colombia to Venezuela and then to Guatemala and Mexico via speedboats carrying tons of cocaine. The former governor of the department of Cesar, Hernando Molina Araujo, established routes and facilitated contacts in Guatemala for loads of cocaine. “
The DEA document adds: “Noguera was responsible for initiating contacts with the organization of the Beltran Leyva Mexican. Garcia also traveled to Mexico and representing Noguera met with members of the Beltran Leyva, who negotiated with drug shipments. “
Garcia and Noguera had denounced in 2006 in Colombia. A year later the Colombian justice stopped him and started against a judgment that climbed to the Criminal Chamber of the Supreme Court, which in September 2011 was sentenced to 25 years in prison for an alliance with the paramilitaries of the AUC and facilitate insider.