Colombia: Trial of Drug-Running Drug Warrior Begins

Why does a dog wag its tail? Because a dog is smarter than its tail. If the tail was smarter, the tail would wag the dog.

According to investigations, the retired general, with the help of his nephew, former prosecutor Leobardo Latorre, who faces charges in the same case, laundered at least 2 billion mafia pesos through Perímetro Ltda. and the Merecure ecolological park, located in the eastern plains.

Llaman a juicio a General (r) Pauselino Latorre, por narcotráfico y lavado de activos: EL TIEMPO reports on the trial of Gen. Latorre on money-laundering and narcotrafficking charges.

Latorre is the former head of Colombian military intelligence.

Apparently we American taxpayers are not giving these valiant Colombian drug warriors enough money to fight the war on drugs for us.

Isn’t it Colombian army intelligence that is now screaming that the FARC are the biggest narcoterrorists in the neighborhood?

The “wag the dog” scenario is being mentioned from time to time. Whenever the probity of the patriotic forces is questioned, they rise up to purge the nation of some vast and spooky threat, be they narco-Satanists or the narco-FARC!

Latorre, ex comandante de Inteligencia del Ejército, tendrá que responder ante un juez especializado por su supuesta participación en una red que sacaba del país 10 toneladas de droga mensuales.

Latorre, former head of Army Intelligence, will have to answer to a special court for his alleged involvement in a network that sent 10 tons of [Bolivian marching powder] of the country every month. 

Según la Fiscalía, Pauselino Latorre conformó empresas que sirvieron para articular al sistema financiero dineros procedentes del narcotráfico.

 According to prosecutors, Latorre founded companies that were used to move narcotrafficking revenues into the formal financial system.

Con ello, anotó la fiscal del caso, “se garantizaba la permanencia de la organización, la financiación de nuevos envíos de droga al exterior y la preservación de bienes conseguidos con el comercio de la cocaína”.

With that, the prosecutor on the case noted, “the organization guaranteed its continuance, the financing of new drug shipments abroad and the preservation of assets obtained from selling cocaine.

La red, que era dirigida por Carlos Aguirre Babativa, alias ‘el Señor’ o ‘Carlos Mario’, es acusada de enviar 3,5 toneladas de droga a España, entre otros cargamentos de estupefacientes.

The network, commanded by Carlos Aguirre Babativa, aka [“The Lord”]  or “Carlos Mario,” is accused of sending 3.5 tons of drugs to Spain, among other shipments of narcotics.

El caso del ex fiscal

The case of the former prosecutor

Según las investigaciones el general (r), con la ayuda de su sobrino, el ex fiscal Leobardo Latorre, también procesado en el mismo caso, habría legalizado al menos 2 mil millones de pesos de la mafia a través de las firmas Perímetro Ltda. y el Parque ecológico Merecure, en los Llanos Orientales.

According to investigations, the retired general, with the help of his nephew, former prosecutor Leobardo Latorre, who faces charges in the same case, laundered at least 2 billion mafia pesos through Perímetro Ltda. and the Merecure ecolological park, located in the eastern plains.   

Latorre figura como representante legal de la empresa House Living S.A., que es señalada en la investigación como la principal empresa fachada de Aguirre Babativa.

Latorre is also the legal representative of House Living S.A., pointed to by investigators as “The Lord’s” principal legitimate front. 

“Pauselino Latorre daba apariencia de legalidad a los dineros provenientes de la actividad ilícita de Aguirre mediante la realización de negocios de fachada”, dijo la fiscal.

“Pauselino Latorre gave the appearance of legality to money from Aguirre’s illegal activity by mounting front businesses,” the prosecutor said.

Estas empresas, agregó, “si bien cumplían los requisitos legales de conformación, eran utilizadas para disfrazar la introducción de activos obtenidos como producto del tráfico de estupefacientes”.

These companies, he added, “though legally incorporated, were used to disguise the entry of assets obtained from narcotics trafficking.”

En su carpeta, la Fiscalía reseñó 36 evidencias que presentará en el juicio; 27 corresponden al mismo número de cd’s en los cuales están relacionadas 3.500 horas de interceptaciones a miembros de la organización. Las restantes pruebas corresponden a grabaciones de seguimientos y vigilancia, así como a informes de policía judicial.

In its [brief], the prosecutor summarized 36 pieces of evience it will present at trial: 27 CDs are containing 3,500 hours of wiretaps of members of the organization. The other evidence are recordings of surveillance and and police reports. 

Ayer no hubo acusación contra el ex fiscal Leobardo Latorre Latorre. ¿La razón? La Fiscalía se declaró impedida para ello. Habrá que esperar a que la Sala Penal del Tribunal Superior de Bogotá clarifique quién llevará el caso.

No charges were filed against Leobardo Latorre yesterday, however. Why? The prosecutors’s office recused itself from the case. We will have to wait for the Bogotá criminal couort to clarify who will prosecute the case.  

A finales de enero pasado, apenas unas horas después de haber sido capturados, el general y el ex fiscal quedaron en libertad por decisión de un juez, pero otras 21 personas, 9 de ellas con pedido de extradición, fueron capturadas en la misma operación.

In late January, just a few hours after being arrested, the ex-general and the ex-prosecutor were set free by judicial order, but another 21 persons, 9 of them with extradition warrants, were arrested in the same operation.  

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