The Americas

Colombia probing 100 alleged disappearances at prison

Colombian prosecutors are investigating the alleged disappearance of as many as 100 people inside a Bogota prison more than 15 years ago.

Special prosecutor Caterina Heyck said Friday that investigations began months ago based on years-old testimony from demobilized paramilitary fighters.

She said that it's unlikely any of the victims' bodies will be found at La Modelo prison because they were allegedly dismembered and dumped in a sewer. Authorities have not undertaken any excavation efforts nor have family members of alleged victims come forward publicly.

But Colombia's overcrowded prisons have long been a factory for criminality and Heyck said the practice of prisoners butchering visitors and fellow inmates may have occurred at other facilities.

The head of Colombia's prison system said he has no information about the alleged disappearances.