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The Colombian Prosecutor’s Office is criminally investigating Nicolás Petro, the eldest son of Colombian President Gustavo Petro, for his alleged meetings with drug traffickers in prison and for “possible money laundering,” according to the prosecutor’s office on Tuesday.
“The units of the Prosecutor General’s Office are investigating in the criminal case and also in the case of assets or possible laundering of assets, these are the advances that we have,” said Attorney General Francisco Barbosa in statements to the media.
Earlier this month, the Attorney General’s Office began investigating the accusations against Congressman Nicolás Petro, whom his ex-wife alleges to have received money from a drug trafficker for his father’s presidential campaign that never reached its destination.
The president himself asked that he be investigated -both the eldest of his sons and his brother Juan Fernando Petro- to “determine who is responsible,” although he has always been “confident” that he can “prove his innocence.”
“There is a presumption of innocence and there are judicial guarantees, what happens is that all the investigations of the Prosecutor’s Office are always focused on the people in the criminal field and on the assets so that there are no assets tied to criminal activities,” the prosecutor alleged on Tuesday in statements to the media.
The ex-wife of Petro’s son, Day Vásquez, assured in an interview with Semana magazine that drug trafficker Samuel Santander Lopesierra, alias “the Marlboro man,” gave Nicolás Petro, congressman in the departmental Assembly of Atlántico, “more than 600 million pesos (about 124,700 dollars today) for his father’s campaign.”
“That never legally reached the campaign because he kept that money, and so did others,” added the woman, who mentioned that Nicolás Petro also received 200 million pesos (about $41,500) from businessman Alfonso “Turco” Hilsaca, which also did not go to the campaign.
And added: “Everything he has done since 2022, well ending 2021 and starting 2022, which was the electoral or pre-electoral period.”
According to information published in the portal La Silla Vacía, Vásquez would have communicated all this information to another of Petro’s daughters, Andrea, who would have transmitted it to her father before the end of last year, but until now, when the information was to be made public in the Semana interview, the president had not acted.
Regarding the investigation against Juan Fernando Petro, brother of the president, the Prosecutor’s Office has already opened an “ex officio criminal notice” (an investigation to determine whether there are indications of a crime) since January 23, because his name appeared related to alleged payments made by drug traffickers to obtain quotas in the total peace, although he claims to be a victim of identity theft.