The Rodríguez Orejuela brothers, former leaders of the now-defunct Cali cartel, accused former Colombian President Andrés Pastrana of corruption on Wednesday, as they claim that he received money from the criminal organization for his campaigns, and of blackmail.
In response to Pastrana’s appearance before the Truth Commission, where the ex-president accused also former president Ernesto Samper of having received money from drug trafficking, Gilberto Rodríguez Orejuela and Miguel Rodríguez Orejuela have sent a letter to the Colombian media accusing him of corruption.
Pastrana has delivered to the Truth Commission a letter in which the brothers supposedly had confessed to contributing “with the money for Ernesto Samper’s campaign, and it was not behind his back.”
Faced with this, the Rodríguez Orejuela family have confirmed that they delivered this letter to Pastrana through the “common friend of his, Dr. Santiago Rojas more than 20 years ago.” However, they have accused the former president of “pointing out and at the same time pretending to pose as a victim of corruption without being included in said corruption.”
“Mr. Former President, you forgot to tell the Truth Commission about your criminal participation in the so-called Dragacol and Chambacú contracts where you were the head of that conspiracy to defraud the State,” the former leaders of the cartel have continued to accuse Pastrana of “blackmail”.
“I refresh your memory, Mr. Former President: it was 1999 or 2000, Miguel and I were incarcerated in the La Picota Prison. It was six in the morning when Dr. Santiago Rojas, his presiding physician, arrived (…), and He invited me to a cell in the same ward where, after a short greeting he told me: Gilberto, I come from the presidency and I’m sorry to bring you bad news, the president is very angry and ready to extradite you and your brother to the United States, so be it administratively “, they have counted.
After this, Gilberto supposedly asked Rojas the reason for the president’s “anger”, to which he replied that the president believed that both he and his brother were “in a conspiracy in company with Samper and Serpa to discredit him (to Pastrana) before public opinion for the corruption that occurred in the Dragacol and Chambacú contracts. ” “Do not doubt for a second that he, before leaving the Presidency, will put you in the United States,” added Rojas, according to the story of the brothers in ‘El Tiempo’.
To avoid extradition, allegedly Pastrana, through Rojas, would have asked the Rodríguez Orejuela family to write “a letter telling how they supported Samper’s campaign, also involving (Horacio) Serpa -ex-Colombian politician-“.
“In short, that is the story of the letter that you delivered to the Truth Commission without this explanation,” a letter that you “promised not to deliver on parole”, to “accuse someone less corrupt than yourself, without saying all the truth “, they have riveted.