Former Colombian president, Alvaro Uribe, used U.S. aid to help him hide connections between his government and drug-trafficking paramilitary groups according to a report from the Washington Post.
The Post reports that money sent to the Colombian government to help eradicate cocaine cartels was actually used to spy on the Colombian Supreme Court, which was beginning to investigate into ties between the Uribe government and cocaine trafficking warlords.
The CIA has also been implicated in training members of the DAS or Department of Administrative Security, who are being investigated for spying of on the Supreme Court, and President Uribe’s political opponents to cover up the President’s allies ties to cocaine traffickers.
The Washington Post reports:
American cash, equipment and training, supplied to elite units of the Colombian intelligence service over the past decade to help smash cocaine-trafficking rings, were used to carry out spying operations and smear campaigns against Supreme Court justices, Uribe’s political opponents and civil society groups, according to law enforcement documents obtained by The Washington Post and interviews with prosecutors and former Colombian intelligence officials.
Prosecutors say the Uribe government wanted to “neutralize” the Supreme Court because its investigative magistrates were unraveling ties between presidential allies in the Colombian congress and drug-trafficking paramilitary groups. Basing their case on thousands of pages of DAS documents and the testimony of nine top former DAS officials, the prosecutors say the agency was directed by the president’s office to collect the banking records of magistrates, follow their families, bug their offices and analyze their court rulings.
Some of those charged or under investigation have described the importance of U.S. intelligence resources and guidance, and say they regularly briefed embassy “liaison” officials on their intelligence-gathering activities. “We were organized through the American Embassy,” said William Romero, who ran the DAS’s network of informants and oversaw infiltration of the Supreme Court.