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Saturday, 25 September 2010

Police accused of helping Bogota neo-Nazis (Colombia)

Youth organizations, supported by a local politician, say that policemen are helping violent neo-Nazis in a Bogota neighborhood, a charge denied by police.

Jaime Caicedo, council member in the Fontibon neighborhood, told local radio station Santa Fe that neo-Nazis have attacked people in Fontibon on several occasions. These assaults are not fights between youths, but well-planned attacks carried out for political reasons, the politician said. Caicedo supports claims by local youth organizations that the police are complicit in the violence.

According to Caicedo, the purpose of the attacks is to silence public protest against abuse and intimation by members of the "Third Force", a local neo-Nazi gang.

On September 14 and 15, when the attacks took place, the police not only took 40 minutes to arrive but also neglected to arrest the attackers or seize the weapons used to beat up two boys, the council member told newspaper El Espectador.

"The local police commander threatened several of those assaulted, warning them not to meet in the 'Parque Fundacional' of Fontibon, a place which has turned into a meeting point for citizens that resist the criminal acts of the neo-Nazi gang members," Caicedo said.

Bogota's metropolitan police rejected the allegations as "completely false."

"There is not one report of fights or physical aggression reported on these dates," said police Colonel Hernandez Aldana.

Colombia Reports