Thursday, February 2, 2023

Colombian police arrest ‘drug dealer’ at his wedding

Colombian police have released further details of the arrest of Camilo Torres on suspicion of drug trafficking.

Mr Torres, better known as Fritanga (Fry-up), was detained minutes after getting married in a lavish ceremony on a Caribbean island on Sunday.

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Police say he is an influential member of the Urabenos gang, which controls much of the drug trafficking in northern Colombia.

A US court has asked for Mr Torres to be extradited on drugs charges.

Police said they surprised Fritanga on the Caribbean island of Mucura moments after he had married his girlfriend and as he was preparing to host a party for 150 guests.

Police said Fritanga had spared no expense, inviting soap-opera stars and entertainers to the festivities, scheduled to last for a week.

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They estimated the cost of the party at $1.41m (£900,000).

Alive and kicking

A video released by the police shows Fritanga’s wife, a model, hugging him and sobbing as officers lead him away.

Police are heard telling guests to lie on the floor and keep their heads down as the arrest is made.

The video also shows Fritanga being shown a photocopy of his ID card by police and jokingly saying that he has trouble recognising it as he has not used it for a few years.

Official documents later showed Mr Torres was listed as deceased.

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His death certificate said he had died of natural causes in the capital, Bogota, on 2 December 2010.

Police are investigating the notary who asked for the death certificate to be issued.

Prosecutors accuse Fritanga of being a leading member of the Urabenos, a criminal gang made up of former paramilitaries which controls much of the drug- and arms-trafficking in northern Colombia.

Earlier this year, the gang offered a reward for the killing of police officers in revenge for the death of their leader, Juan de Dios Usuga.

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos has made the fight against gangs such as the Urabenos one of his government’s priorities.

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