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Senior intelligence chiefs suspended or resign over scandal on tapping of journalists' and politicians' telephones

(RSF/IFEX) - On 25 June 2007, the Colombian authorities announced the suspension for three months of five senior police and intelligence officials suspected of illegally tapping the telephones of journalists, opposition politicians and even current government officials.

Those sanctioned include the director of intelligence operations and the director of counter-espionage. A third intelligence chief, Gen. Guillermo Chávez Ocaña, the head of the Police Intelligence Directorate (Dipol), resigned immediately after the scandal was revealed by defence minister Juan Manuel Santos on 14 May, a day after the weekly magazine "Semana" published the transcripts of phone taps showing that paramilitary chiefs held in Itagüi prison ran criminal operations from their cells.

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