Supreme Court of Justice
Álvaro Uribe in the Supreme Court
Former President Álvaro Uribe must answer for a criminal proceeding before the Supreme Court of Justice, Colombia will live a judicial milestone this Tuesday when the former president makes a judicial statement before the Supreme Court of Justice.
For the first time in its history, a former Colombian president arrives at that High Court.
Other presidents have faced political trials, but that of Uribe is a criminal process for alleged manipulation of witnesses to declare in his favor and unlink him and his brother from alleged paramilitary complaints.
The former president entered the judicial cloister among harangues of some citizens opposed to him who said "murderer", while others, his supporters, shouted "Uribe" and cheered with applause.
The investigation has agitated the country and some of the followers of Uribismo, who have warned they could "burn Colombia" if the decision is not favorable to their leader, planned marches in support of the former president. The level of tension is such that this Monday the investigation changed place, on the recommendation of the Police. Now it will be done in the Palace of Justice and under reservation.
The case that has the former president in suspense is due to procedural fraud and bribery and took an unexpected turn. In 2012, Uribe denounced the left-wing senator Iván Cepeda for alleged manipulation of witnesses in the prisons of the country where Cepeda allegedly sought exparamilitaries to link the former president with those illegal groups. Juan Guillermo Monsalve, one of those former paramilitaries and son of the butler of the Guacharacas estate, which was owned by the Uribe family, said that both the former president and his brother had participated in the creation of a paramilitary block.
After its investigation, the Court not only filed the case against Cepeda but also opened a process against the former president. Why? The Court affirmed in 2018 that: "apparently with his consent, people close to former President Uribe would have undertaken new acts of witness manipulation." They allegedly sought exparamilitaries to retract these sayings in exchange for money and judicial support to reduce penalties. The Court must prove that Uribe's lawyer, Diego Cadena, pressured these exparamilitaries and also that he had the authorization of the former president.