The report was secret. Until a week ago he remained under the custody of the Intelligence Secretariat (Senain), but now it is one of the last documents that the Prosecutor’s Office analyzes in the investigation into the kidnapping of Fernando Balda, which occurred in Colombia in 2012.
The document, which is already public, dates from that year and shows the details of the Guayacán operation, which was mounted by the Senain to attend a forum of former Colombian president Álvaro Uribe, and where Balda was also present.
The secret document, whose title is ‘Tactical Action Order 001’, reveals the names of three new agents of the Senain (two women and one man) who traveled to Colombia to “cover” the act where Balda was. According to the report, the objective of the mission was “to have knowledge of the participants of the event and the issues that were to be addressed”.
For that, Senain formed the group with the three agents, which he later named as “Alpha team”. The document indicates that the three uniformed had the order to adopt a characterization of tourists or merchants. In addition, they gave them indications of what their trip would be like and what they would have to do if they were discovered by the Colombian authorities.
For example, the two women had to enter Colombia by land and reach Pasto. Then they had to take a plane to Medellin and stay at the same hotel where the event was going to take place. Once inside, the two agents had to check the hotel’s facilities and find the room where the former President Uribe’s forum was going to be. There they had to install equipment to record the meeting with Balda.
In a part of the report, it even states the following: “in case of not being able to enter the room, it will be a question of recruiting the hotel staff, who will make the recordings”. Instead, the other agent should look for an escape route and identify the threats they might have to fulfill the mission.
Another indication that they gave him is that “if there is a possibility to enter the room (of the event), he will have a suit according to the act”. The provisions changed if they were discovered. According to the Senain report, agents had to defend their fictitious histories of tourism and commerce.
Finally, if necessary, the three could report to “the officials of the diplomatic offices of Ecuador in Colombia.” The report also details a line of command that covert agents should have. The superior was the then General Counterintelligence Coordinator of the Senain. The three could communicate with him through cell phone calls. In the logistics, on the other hand, it was detailed that all the expenses that the operation would generate would be borne by the Senain.
Hence, Balda denounces that the government of former President Rafael Correa was aware of these operations, as the document was signed by the former Secretary of Intelligence, Pablo Romero, prosecuted in the case. Stalyn Oviedo, attorney for Romero, said the report is false and that the dates of the events do not coincide with the case.
On Monday, July 16, 2018, Balda announced that he will ask to investigate the three new agents mentioned in the report that was made public yesterday. This is despite the fact that the Prosecutor’s Office has two days left to close the fiscal investigation for the abduction of the ex-legislator. In fact, the latest proceedings in the case resumed on Monday. At 08:30 an extension of his version was rendered by the former Secretary of Intelligence, Rommy Vallejo.
The official appeared from Chicago (USA) through a video conference. The diligence lasted about 10 minutes. Then it was the turn of Paulina Sumárraga, ex-servant of the Secretariat of Intelligence (Senain). She entered the offices of the Attorney General’s Office around 09:30. Santiago Mena, also a former secretary of the Senain, arrived at the Prosecutor’s Office. After an hour, the police officer said he did not know the facts and that he was not responsible for anything.
Alexis Mera, one of the lawyers of ex-President Correa, was also called by the Prosecutor’s Office and upon his arrival he did not want to rule on the case. Former Foreign Minister Ricardo Patiño was also on the list of people summoned, but did not attend the stage.
The facts in this case
March 18 2018
Intelligence agents Raúl Chicaiza, Jessica Falcón and Jorge Espinoza are detained. The Prosecutor’s Office accuses them of participating in the kidnapping of Fernando Balda.
May 31, 2018
The former Director of Intelligence of the Police, Fausto Tamayo, and the former National Secretary of Intelligence (Senain), Pablo Romero are linked to the case by the Prosecutor’s Office.
June 18, 2018
Former President Rafael Correa is linked to the case. Judge Daniella Camacho orders that the Former President periodically appears before the Ecuadorian Justice.
July 3, 2018
Failure to comply with the precautionary measures of the former head of state causes Judge Camacho to order the preventive detention. The Former President is still free in Belgium. (I)