Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Shuffle Time in Colombia

Colombia's president, Juan Manuel Santos, has dissolved the country's domestic intelligence service after the agency was caught spying on political enemies of his predecessor, Álvaro Uribe.

Santos had already announced that the administrative department of security (DAS) would be replaced by a new agency after a string of revelations that employees spied illegally on presidential rivals including judges, reporters and human rights activists during the 2002-2010 Uribe administration.

Some DAS agents and officials also colluded with extreme-right militias that killed and displaced thousands of people and persecuted labour activists.

Uribe's first DAS chief, Jorge Noguera, was convicted last month of murder after a death squad killed a leftwing university professor in 2004.

  UK Guardian

Like Blackwater/Xe, to be renamed. And its agents to be absorbed into other agencies.

About half the 6,000 DAS employees will go to the chief prosecutor's office, where many investigators will join the investigators' corps. Others are being shifted to the national police and government ministries.

Where they can do similar damage.

Neither was it immediately clear how much US assistance the new agency could receive. Before the scandal, the DAS received some US training and equipment, including a unit that worked closely with the US Drug Enforcement Administration. US government officials say the agency's use of that aid was closely monitored so as to prevent abuses.

Apparently that worked well.

....but hey, do what you will anyway.

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