BOGOTA, Colombia — Fourteen former soldiers are being summoned by Colombia's special peace tribunals for the killings of five young men who were abducted in 2008 and later presented as rebel casualties.
During a hearing Friday a judge informed the soldiers of their obligations to confess any crimes if they are to avoid jail time. The victims' mothers said their sons weren't part of the armed conflict and said their killers shouldn't be tried by courts set up by a 2016 peace deal with leftist rebels.
In a bid to boost body counts thousands of civilians were killed by the military and passed off as enemy combatants during Colombia's half-century conflict. The so-called "false-positives" scandal was triggered by the murder of the five men who hail from a slum near the capital.