Son of Trade Unionist Kidnapped and Tortured

News from Colombia | on: Saturday, 29 September 2007

On the 27th September, 2007 at 4pm, Andres Damian Florez, the son of Jose Domingo Florez (a worker at the Coca-Cola Bottling Factory and a leader of Colombia's Food and Drinks Workers' Union SINALTRAINAL), was attacked by three armed men in a black jeep as he walked home from school in the Andes neighborhood of the town of Floridablanca in Santander department.

The men, who carried two way radios and were wearing balaclavas, forced Andres into the vehicle, and threw him onto the floor of the jeep, where they then proceeded to beat him. One of the men then called someone on his radio and said, "We have the son of the bitch, what should we do with him?" The person on the other end of the radio replied, "Give him a ride, punish him and give him the message". The caller then turned to the boy and said, "Tell your father that we won't rest until we see him chopped into pieces." They then dumped Andres in a place called Palenque on the road to the nearby town of Lebrija.

This most recent attack follows paramilitary death threats received by SINALTRAINAL members and their families on the 10th February, 26th July, 9th August, 13th August, 20th September and 25th September, 2007.

Justice for Colombia has been sent copies of the death threats by SINALTRAINAL and has translated one that refers to Mr Florez and his family:


Sons of Bitches Trade Unionists Guerrillas the time has run out for you to shut up as you didn't choose how you want to die; now we will decide how you die. We will begin with Jose Domingo Florez and his family and then we'll follow on with the rest of the bastard guerrillas. We, the demobilized haven't silenced our guns; very soon you'll see the fat bastard and his family dead.

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