Colombian Criminal Justice in Crisis: Fear and Distrust by Elvira María Restrepo (auth.)

By Elvira María Restrepo (auth.)

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Drug traffickers perceived the revival of extradition as a declaration of war. This was all the more relevant given that the state was at the time involved in its first ever negotiations with drug traffickers. In the course of these negotiations, various drug dealers had even offered to cease trafficking and to repatriate all their capital in exchange for the Colombian state’s agreement not extradite them to the United States. 39 As discussed later in more detail, the PSJ was perceived by the United States as a soft statute – hence its approval was made conditional upon several factors, among which the most notorious was Gaviria’s acceptance to support the retirement of Fiscal General Gustavo de Greiff, before the end of his legal term.

The most ‘inconvenient’ laws were hence treated with the infamous phrase: ‘I obey, but I do not perform’ (Obedezco pero no ejecuto). 22 Colombian Criminal Justice in Crisis The post-colonial scenario was the result of the Spanish-American wars of independence. Many revisionist historians agree that, in spite of the ideological influence of the French Revolution and the Independence of the United States, the Independence of the Spanish colonies was mainly the result of the collapse of the Borbón Dynasty at the beginning of the 1800s.

One could say that in this panorama, the political system is not totally legitimate or illegitimate, but rather that it reflects an insufficient legitimacy. The third and last dimension of Beetham’s theory involves the demonstrable expression of consent on the part of the ruled. In Beetham’s view, actions expressive of consent are important for legitimacy because they constitute an express confirmation on the part of the subordinate of the position of those in power. Consent also introduces a moral component into the power relationship.

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