HomeNewsAnalysisTimeline: Revelations from the ‘Raul Reyes’ Computers
ANALYSIS

Timeline: Revelations from the 'Raul Reyes' Computers

ALFONSO CANO / 26 APR 2011 BY HANNAH STONE EN

With a British think tank set to publish a WikiLeaks-style database of unedited computer documents seized from the camp of FARC commander "Raul Reyes," InSight looks at the chronology of information released from the files so far.

When the Colombian authorities bombed Raul Reyes' camp on March 1, 2008, they seized three laptops, two external hard disks and three USB drives, containing a huge quantity of digital information. Since then the revelations have flowed from the files, first in a rush and then, in more recent years, in a drip.

The International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS) is set to release all "relevant" e-mails on a searchable CD-ROM on May 10, along with a report analyzing the data and what it shows about the FARC’s development and relationships with Venezuela and Ecuador. The report and files together can be purchased for £40 ($66).

The question now is whether new information will be revealed in this report. The likely answer is not much; a U.S. diplomatic cable released recently by WikiLeaks showed how methodical and organized the Colombian government has been in its use of the seized files. In the communication, sent only weeks after the bomb attack, U.S. officials reported that the Uribe administration planned to selectively leak information to foreign and domestic press that would tie the Ecuadorean and Venezuelan governments to the rebel group. One government official is named as the person chosen to plan and implement this "computer exploitation strategy."

Given all this forward planning, it is improbable that there remains much of great interest in the files that has not already been made public, at least regarding the topics of greatest importance to Colombia; namely the guerrillas' links with foreign governments.

However, there may still be pieces of information that it has not yet become opportune for Colombia to make public. The most recent nugget released by the government was that the FARC, apparently, wrote to Colonel Muammar Gaddafi in 2000, seeking funds to buy ground-to-air missiles. The timing of this latest piece of information, coinciding with the crisis in Libya, suggest that there may remain similarly inconsequential details in the files which have not been revealed.

Uribe allies claim that there are more revelations to come. “What we know so far is only the tip of the iceberg, soon the details of the relations of the FARC with Venezuela, Ecuador, and with Colombian and North American politicians will be known,” said former Uribe advisor Jose Obdulio Gaviria, according to El Nuevo Heraldo.

The thinking behind publishing the files via the IISS is also explained in the WikiLeaks cable, which says that Colombia plans to ask an international organization, not affiliated with the government, to publish the files once they have been verified as genuine by Interpol.

Below is InSight's timeline of the the biggest revelations, and their repercussions, that have emerged from the seized computer disks so far.

 

 

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

COLOMBIA / 29 MAY 2012

Colombian authorities seized a shipment of 150 rifles which kingpin Daniel "El Loco" Barrera was allegedly shipping to…

COLOMBIA / 2 NOV 2011

Over a year after Colombia repaired diplomatic relations with Venezuela and Ecuador, the border areas remain some of the worst…

COLOMBIA / 11 MAR 2019

Hundreds of citizens in a key drug trafficking region of southern Colombia have been forced to flee their homes amid…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Unraveling the Web of Elites Connected to Organized Crime

27 JUL 2021

InSight Crime published Elites and Organized Crime in Nicaragua, a deep dive into the relationships between criminal actors and elites in that Central American nation.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime’s Greater Focus on US-Mexico Border

20 JUL 2021

InSight Crime has decided to turn many of its investigative resources towards understanding and chronicling the criminal dynamics along the US-Mexico border.

THE ORGANIZATION

Key Arrests and Police Budget Increases Due to InSight Crime Investigations

8 JUL 2021

With Memo Fantasma’s arrest, InSight Crime has proven that our investigations can and will uncover major criminal threats in the Americas.

THE ORGANIZATION

Organized Crime’s Influence on Gender-Based Violence

30 JUN 2021

InSight Crime investigator Laura N. Ávila spoke on organized crime and gender-based violence at the launch of a research project by the United Nations Development Programme.

THE ORGANIZATION

Conversation with Paraguay Judicial Operators on PCC

24 JUN 2021

InSight Crime Co-director Steven Dudley formed part of a panel attended by over 500 students, all of whom work in Paraguay's judicial system.