[Ppnews] No Evidence, Paid Informers-Colombian Rebel Awaits Verdict

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Tue Feb 13 14:16:09 EST 2007

<http://www.fightbacknews.org/2006/05/index.htm>February 2007

No Evidence, Paid Informers
Colombian Rebel Awaits Verdict
By Staff

Washington DC - With no evidence and only the testimony of U.S. 
government paid informants, Colombian revolutionary "Sonia" awaits a 
jury's verdict here in Federal Court. Sonia, whose full name is 
Anayibe Rojas Valderrama, is a peasant rebel who joined the fight for 
a free, just and independent Colombia. A nurse with the 30,000 member 
Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), Sonia was extradited 
to the U.S. in violation of Colombia's sovereignty.

Like political prisoner and FARC leader Ricardo Palmera, whose U.S. 
trial ended in a hung jury, Sonia's trial is designed by the Bush 
administration to criminalize the FARC. Tom Burke of the National 
Committee to Free Ricardo Palmera states, "In Sonia's case, the big 
lie is that the FARC are narco-traffickers. Photographic or physical 
evidence linking the FARC to drug running is impossible to find 
because it does not exist. It is as phony as Iraqi weapons of mass 

In Sonia's trial, the jury only heard testimony from the U.S. 
government's paid informants and the defense called no witnesses or 
Sonia herself to testify. The first witness, who the prosecutor 
called and then described as being involved in kidnapping, drug 
trafficking, theft and writing bad checks, had no credibility 
whatsoever. "Rocio Alvarez" is paid $15,000 per month by the U.S. 
government to testify against Sonia. As described by Washington D.C. 
lawyer and trial observer Paul Wolf, "Everyone knew she was lying - 
the judge, the jury, the news media. Above all, the lawyers who put 
Rocio Alvarez on the witness stand."

Wolf goes on to describe another witness: "The second witness, 
Mauricio Moreno, was a retired officer of the Colombian National 
Police who could not remember why he lost his job. Shortly 
thereafter, he found employment as the bodyguard of Gordo Andres, an 
alleged drug trafficker, and then as an informant against the FARC. 
Moreno testified as to his boss's alleged drug transactions with 
Sonia and to a bizarre plan to sell cocaine to paramilitaries, then 
steal it back from them and then export it to the United States."

The U.S. government, not shy about stereotyping Colombians, gives the 
third witness the false name "Juan Valdez." Attorney Wolf reports on 
"Juan Valdez's" allegations: "He captained the riverboat used by 
Sonia on a bi-weekly basis, over a two year period, up and down the 
Caguan river, buying hundreds of tons of cocaine and returning 
hundreds of millions of dollars to the impoverished economy. Although 
the Colombian military controlled the river during that time, Valdez 
and Sonia supposedly ruled the river in their own way, making 
hundreds of enormous drug deals in a regular pattern, and, 
apparently, providing a large percentage of the cocaine reaching 
North American shores. Valdez buried the valuable gringo dollars in 
various places in the jungle, marking trees with an X and drawing 
treasure maps." It is a fantastic story.

Wolf also reports, "Then there was Pedro Lopez, a reinserted 
guerrilla from the 14th front who also claimed that Sonia was 
financial officer there. And finally, "Lechuga" - their man in Panama 
City, Panama, who may just have spotted Sonia in the Seven Seas 
restaurant. Lechuga was allegedly an old time narcotrafficker, going 
back 20 years to the Noriega days."

The U.S. prosecutor's approach is to throw as much mud as possible 
and hope some sticks. Sonia, who took notes and paid close attention 
during the proceedings, must hope for one or more jurors who 
understand the poverty and oppression caused by U.S. domination and 
war in her country. A verdict in Sonia's trial is likely this week.

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