Colombia promises shorter sentences to drug traffickers who surrender

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Colombia may reduce prison sentences by up to a half for criminal gang members who surrender, the presidency and media reports said on Monday.

The new legislation signed by President Juan Manuel Santos targets thousands of members of drug trafficking gangs, such as the Gulf Clan and the former guerrilla movement FARC, which also engages in drug trafficking.

“The measure has been discussed with the Gulf Clan.

“It will have a very important consequence for the country in the coming days,’’ the president said in what was interpreted as a reference to a large-scale surrender by members of the Gulf Clan.

After FARC signed a peace agreement with the government in 2016, criminal gangs took over many areas the guerrillas withdrew from.

Their activities include drug trafficking, extortion, kidnappings and illegal mining.

Biola Lawal

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