JEP rejected the submission of former paramilitary Andrés Vélez and will not grant him benefits from the Final Peace Agreement

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The “expara” was convicted of money laundering, procedural fraud and false testimony

JEP rejected the submission of former paramilitary Andrés Vélez and will not grant him benefits from the Final Peace Agreement

JEP rejected the request for subjugation of the former paramilitary Andrés Vélez and will not grant him benefits from the Final Peace Agreement. (Colprensa – Álvaro Tavera)

Between May 2018 and April 2019, former paramilitary Andrés de Jesús Vélez FrancoHe requested that they accept his submission to the JEP. The ex-paramilitary is currently serving a sentence for money laundering, procedural fraud and false testimony.

The JEP rejected the submission of the ex-paramilitary Andrés Vélez and will not grant him benefits of the Final Peace Agreement, arguing that Vélez Franco cannot be considered as a third party and does not prove any of the qualities to be considered as another class of recipient of the JEP Therefore, in relation to this, he does not meet the personal scope of competence to access this Jurisdiction.

On the other hand, the JEP made it clear that his conduct they did not occur in relation to, or within the context of, the armed conflict, rather they are common crimes and thus the JEP is not responsible for “common crimes that have not been committed in the context and in relation to the armed conflict”.

In this sense, the conviction against Andrés de Jesús Vélez Franco states that he was part of an international network of money launderers that, among other illegal activities, provided currency monetization services to groups outside the law in Colombia such as the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia -AUC-, which could constitute collaboration in the financing of such armed actor, the study of the request presented as a civil third party will be addressed and it will be determined if the behaviors are related to the internal armed conflict -CANI- or were on the occasion of it, indicated the JEP.

Finally, it was proven that the ex-paramilitary was part of an international network that handled financial operations and alliances with different companies and individuals that appeared to have legal commercial activities as their object, to introduce into the economic torrent money obtained from narcotics trafficking.

In this way, abundant flows of foreign currency entered the country that were transferred to supposed suppliers, who were in charge of sending them to third parties or “brokers” who delivered or directed the money to its true owners”, reported the JEP. Additionally, it was established that they monetized currency for the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia –AUC-.

In this regard, in said decision it was said: “Andrés Vélez Franco publicly recognized himself with paramilitary or self-defense groups, from whom it is well known that they derived their economic support mainly from drug trafficking, after all, these groups were created under the protection and initiative of drug traffickers who through their private armies wanted and have wanted to defend their economic interests against other armed actors”.

In this context and in the development of the judicial process, it was established that the money laundered had its origin in illegal activities, especially drug trafficking. In relation to the foregoing, it was held that: “the illicit origin of the money lies in his relationship with Andrés Vélez and his ties to drug trafficking and with the paramilitaries, a link admitted by the latter in his injured indictment that revealed the transit of money from drug trafficking from Mexico through the Casa de Cambio de Puebla to the accounts of the oil companies involved”.

Finally, and after the JEP to present all its arguments, it was indicated that there is a material incompetence of the JEP with respect to drug trafficking and other crimes committed by Andrés Vélez, thus, the request for submission presented to the Special Jurisdiction for La Paz by Andrés de Jesús Vélez Franco, was inadmissible due to lack of personal and material competence of the JEP.