Mario Burgos, the prosecutor of the case against Nicolas Petro, has announced that the accused “provided relevant information that the Prosecutor’s Office was unaware of.” He explained that the son of the president of Colombia acknowledged “acts that are of concern to the country”. In his statement, the eldest son of the current president Gustavo Petro allegedly admitted receiving illicit money from a former drug lord, part of which was used to fund last year’s presidential campaign.
Nicolas Petro allegedly agreed to cooperate with the justice system to facilitate the clarification of the case. In this regard, the arrested individual “corroborates and ratifies the Prosecutor’s Office’s theory of the case,” said Prosecutor Burgos. It is worth noting that during the arrest last Saturday, the deputy from Atlántico was accused of illicit enrichment and money laundering.
Recognition of the facts
Petro reportedly admitted, according to Prosecutor Burgos, that he had accepted money from the well-known drug trafficker Samuel Santander Lopesierra, alias “Hombre Marlboro.” This accusation was made last March by his ex-wife, Daysuris Vásquez, in statements to the Semana magazine. Vasquez is also currently detained, accused of money laundering and violation of personal data.
“A part of this money was used by Nicolas Petro and his wife for their personal benefit and to unjustifiably increase their wealth and launder money. Another part of this money was invested in the 2022 presidential campaign,” explained Prosecutor Burgos. Regarding this second accusation, which involves the father’s presidential campaign, the prosecutor stated that the sum of money “exceeded legal limits and was not reported to the electoral authorities.”
Unjustifiable expenses for the Prosecutor’s Office
During the hearing last Tuesday, the prosecutor listed Nicolas Petro’s total expenses during the fiscal year 2022, which exceeded 1.6 billion pesos. These high expenses could not be justified, as Nicolas Petro’s salary as deputy of Atlantico is 220 million pesos annually. During the hearing, Prosecutor Burgos told the accused, “to justify the expenses you incurred, you would have had to earn 200 million pesos per month.”
Collaboration with Justice brings benefits
In the same hearing, the prosecutor acknowledged that collaboration with justice from now on implies penitentiary benefits that could lead to a 50% reduction in the prison sentence.
The Prosecutor’s Office requested the “house arrest” formula for Nicolas Petro. This measure would mean that the detainee would be confined to his home. He would not be able to leave the residence but would evade prison for now. On the other hand, the prosecution’s request for the ex-wife was for conditional release while the trial takes place.