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Cablegate: Para-Political Legal Framework Not On Legislative

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E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/20/2017
TAGS: KJUS PGOV PINR PREL PTER CO
SUBJECT: PARA-POLITICAL LEGAL FRAMEWORK NOT ON LEGISLATIVE
FAST TRACK

Classified By: Political Counselor John S. Creamer.
Reasons: 1.4 (b) and (d)

1. (C) Presidential Legal Advisor Mauricio Gonzalez told
polcouns June 15 the GOC proposal to provide for reduced,
alternative sentences for politicians, front men
(testaferros), ranchers, and others who were linked to the
paramilitaries but were not United Self-Defense Forces of
Colombia (AUC) members nor involved in atrocities is not on a
legislative fast track. The GOC has yet to decide if it will
introduce legislation in the next Congressional session,
which starts on July 20, but Gonzalez continues to work on a
possible bill.

2. (C) Gonzalez said Uribe has made clear he is not looking
for an amnesty; he wants a bill that would provide for
reduced sentences (3-5 years) conditioned on reparations and
full confessions. Individuals who received the reduced
sentences would be required to serve some jail time and would
be subject to a lifetime ban from participating in politics.
Gonzalez said if the bill went forward, it would introduce
proportionality between the sentences served by paramilitary
collaborators and the time served by paramilitary leaders
guilty of atrocities. He said it would be unjust for an
individual who helped the paramilitaries under duress to
serve more time than an individual guilty of multiple
massacres.

3. (C) Meanwhile, lawyers for congressmen implicated in the
parapolitical scandal are soliciting legislative support for
a bill to reclassify the conspiracy charges facing their
clients ("concierto a delinquir") as a political crime, which
would make them eligible for pardons and would preserve their
political careers. Gonzalez said Justice and Interior
Minister Carlos Holguin had blocked effort to introduce an
amendment to that effect in the legislative session that
ended on June 20. Gonzalez told polcouns Uribe will not
support this approach and will not pardon congressmen
involved in the parapolitical scandal.
Drucker

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