Bogotá, Colombia: The president of Colombia, Gustavo Petro, asked the Prosecutor’s Office this Thursday to determine if his son and brother have offered benefits to drug traffickers within the framework of peace policies in exchange for money.
“Due to the information rumored in public opinion about my brother Juan Fernando Petro Urrego and my eldest son, Nicolás Petro Burgos, he requested the Attorney General’s Office to conduct all necessary investigations and determine possible responsibilities,” he said. The leftist president in a statement.
The government itself has denounced the existence of a cartel that bribes prisoners to offer them false mediation in peace processes, judicial benefits, or promises to avoid their extradition.
“My government will not grant benefits to criminals in exchange for bribes,” he insisted in the statement.
“I trust that my brother and my son can prove their innocence but I will respect the conclusions reached by justice,” added Petro in the text.
His brother already appeared before the Prosecutor’s Office for these complaints in early February in a reserved 40-minute statement.
That day, Juan Fernando Petro’s lawyer assured that his defense was a “victim” of a network of lawyers who used his name to advance alleged efforts before the government.
At the beginning of 2022, in the middle of the presidential campaign, Juan Fernando went to a prison in Bogotá to meet with several inmates.
According to the press, in that meeting, he offered benefits to those convicted of corruption and drug trafficking in a possible government of his brother.
The then-candidate, Gustavo Petro, denied this version and assured that his brother was not part of the campaign.
Nicolás Petro, a deputy for his father’s political movement in the department of Atlántico (north), could also be involved.
With his “total peace” policy, Petro seeks the peaceful dismantling of drug gangs in exchange for criminal and economic benefits for those who abandon the business in the country that produces the most cocaine in the world.
According to Semana magazine, the lawyers’ cartel would charge drug traffickers up to a million dollars in exchange for being included in lists of “peace managers” who cannot be deported.
The government has announced a bill that will establish maximum sentences of eight years and the possibility of keeping up to 10% of their fortunes for drug traffickers who take legal action.