.- The Secretary General of the Bishops’ Conference of Colombia, Bishop Emeritus Fabian Marulanda, has requested that the Attorney General of Colombia speed up the investigation into a Spanish priest who has been accused of having ties to the Armed Revolutionary Forces of Colombia (FARC). Father Ricardo Lorenzo Cantalapiedra was detained by authorities in August and has been held on suspicion of being a front man for the rebel group. “The slow pace of Colombian justice has not allowed the juridical situation of this priest to be clarified,” Bishop Marulanda said, adding that for the bishops, the relationship between Father Cantalapiedra and the FARC is only “circumstantial,” as for the past two years the priest has been pastor of church in the region of La Uribe, where there is a large presence of armed rebels.
The priest’s family in Spain sent a letter to Colombia’s Attorney General, Mario Iguaran, asking for “impartial observers,” because “nobody is guilty until proven otherwise.”
The Colombian radio station Caracol reported that Father Cantalapiedra has been under house arrest at the Salesian Provincial House in Bogota and that a hearing has been set for September 23 to review the accusations against him.