Gordo Lindo, drug trafficker and former paramilitary commander, was released

Francisco Javier Zuluaga Lindo, alias ‘Gordo Lindo’, He was released by order of a judge who endorsed the claim presented by his defense. The drug trafficker and former paramilitary commander was deprived of his freedom in La Picota prison for four years without his legal situation being resolved for the crimes of money laundering and illicit enrichment.

In 2018 he returned to Colombia after serving a nine-year sentence in the United States for crimes related to drug trafficking. Once in national territory, he was notified of the existence of a security measure against him, for which he was sent to jail.

In the peace process with the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC) he presented himself as commander of a block. However, over time it was found that he had paid a large sum of money to be included in this list, this despite the fact that he had never been part of this criminal structure.

The fifth court for the execution of sentences in Bogotá reported that on June 30, 2021, the fourth specialized court in Cali sentenced Gordo Lindo to 66 months and 18 days in prison, and a fine of 451.4 current legal minimum wages. for the crime of money laundering. In that decision, he was denied parole or home detention.

“Due to the events that gave rise to the conviction, the inmate has been deprived of his liberty since April 30, 2018.” Faced with this case, a surrender of six months and four days was recognized in the sentence issued for good conduct, study and work.

Due to this situation, it was considered that Gordo Lindo had already served his sentence. “It is clear that the sentenced Francisco Javier Zuluaga Lindo must regain his freedom, so that through this provision the extinction of the sentence will be decreed, the definitive release and as a consequence of this, his freedom due to the sentence served in regards to This process”. The court sent the decision to the Penitentiary Institute (Inpec) and to the La Picota prison so that they issue the respective release slip.

Likewise, it is noted that this freedom will be effective as long as Zuluaga Lindo does not have another legal requirement, such as a private seizure measure or an arrest warrant.

The drug trafficker who only sought the benefits of Justice and Peace

On September 17, 2013, the Justice and Peace Chamber of the Superior Court of Medellín ordered the exclusion of Gordo Lindo from the Justice and Peace process, considering that he failed to comply with the precept of truth regarding his membership of that illegal armed group. In the decision signed by magistrates Rubén Darío Pinilla, María Consuelo Rincón and Juan Guillermo Cárdenas, they concluded that Zuluaga bought the Block and posed as a paramilitary to receive legal benefits.

The decision states that he lied repeatedly after presenting himself as the financial chief of the Calima Bloc of the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia. The statements of the paramilitary commanders Helbert Velosa, alias ‘H.H’ and other members of that structure were key to establishing that he was never part of the ranks of the AUC.

The evidence did reveal that in his practice of drug trafficking he had contact with paramilitary leaders, among them the brothers Carlos and Vicente Castaño Gil, with whom he had business and contributed money to finance paramilitary structures in different regions of the country.

In his exclusion, the commitment signed by Gordo Lindo to deliver goods to repair the victims of the AUC was not valid.

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