The Jose Alvear Restrepo Lawyers’ Collective (CCAJAR) provides legal representation to approximately 130 victims of alleged extrajudicial executions implicating hundreds of officers, junior officers and soldiers of the Armed Forces.
One of the most well-known cases is that of the ‘Soacha mothers’ (Cundinamarca) in 2008, when members of the Colombian Army presented the bodies of 17 young men as guerrillas killed in combat; eight members of the military were found guilty of killing two of the young men and sentenced to between 28 and 55 years’ prison in 2011.
CCAJAR also represents the relatives of 11 victims of alleged extrajudicial executions in Toluviejo (Sucre), some of them under 18 years of age, whose bodies were presented as guerrillas killed in combat in 2007. It also represents the relatives of Helvir Antonio Torrex Clavijo, who was victim of an extrajudicial killing on 17th September 2006 in Pasca municipality (Cundinamarca). The victim was reported to have been killed in fighting between an Army Battalion and the FARC, however, witnesses have discredited the Army’s version and given evidence that it is a ‘false positive’ or extrajudicial execution. The facts in the case confirmed the responsibility of second corporal Araujo Maestre Alvaro Elias and lieutenant colonel Luis Fernando Borja Aristizabal was also found guilty.