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Iran Press TV

Colombia's top court orders house arrest for ex-president in fraud case

Iran Press TV

Wednesday, 05 August 2020 5:26 AM

Colombia's Supreme Court has ordered house arrest for former president Alvaro Uribe as it investigates allegations of witness tampering and procedural fraud against him, in the first ever such ruling in the country's modern history.

Uribe, who was president from 2002 to 2010, is accused of attempting to bribe and sway witnesses in a dispute with leftist Senator Ivan Cepeda.

The former president, now serving as a senator, has repeatedly declared his innocence in the case and questioned the court's independence.

The court's unanimous decision, which was made public late on Tuesday, said magistrates found "possible risks" of obstruction of justice, as they continued to investigate accusations against Uribe.

"Senator Uribe will serve out his confinement in his residence, from where he can continue to mount his defense," said the court.

The former president is at his country house in Cordoba Province, according to local media.

Uribe's case began in 2012, when he accused leftist Cepeda of orchestrating a plot to tie him to right-wing paramilitary groups. The Supreme Court, however, dismissed the allegations, saying that Uribe himself was at fault.

Uribe faces prison terms of up to 12 years.

People gathered in the capital, Bogota, to celebrate the court's Tuesday decision, while Uribe's supporters were also set to gather in their cars to protest the ruling.

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