The Supreme Court of Colombia has confirmed a lower court ruling from last May that rescinded an arrest warrant and fine against Archbishop Fabio Betancur Tirado of Manizales, who was charged with contempt by a former seminarian.
The process against Archbishop Betancur began when a local judge ordered him to explain to former seminarian Juan Pablo Mejia Granada within 48 hours the reasons for which he was expelled from the Seminary of Manizales in 1999. The judge ruled that Archbishop Betancur did not comply with his order and issued a warrant for his arrest and fined him. That ruling was confirmed by a circuit court on last April 20.
The archbishop’s lawyer, Jose Fernando Ortega, appealed the ruling and was granted a new hearing, thus rescinding the lower court’s order. That ruling was appealed by the lower court judge.
The Colombian Supreme Court agreed to hear the case and has ruled in favor of the appeals court and its ruling to rescind the arrest warrant and the fine. The case can now only be appealed to Colombia’s Constitutional Court.