BOGOTA — The murder of a Paraguayan prosecutor known for his fight against organized crime was likely the victim of “transnational” criminals, the head of Colombia’s police said on Wednesday, as both countries pledged to investigate the high-profile crackdown.
Prosecutor Marcelo Pecci, 45, was shot dead on Tuesday on the island of Baru, near the Caribbean city of Cartagena, while on his honeymoon with his wife.
General Jorge Luis Vargas, head of Colombia’s national police, told reporters that the “big assumption” was that Page’s killing was likely related to his prosecution in Paraguay, which typically focuses on high-stakes anti-money laundering and anti-drug cases .
“We’re talking about a highly planned, transnational criminal system in which a lot of money is likely spent to commit murders,” Vargas said, noting that the reward for information equivalent to nearly $500,000 resulted in arrests where provided.
Vargas added that police have pictures of the main suspect, but he would not confirm rumors that non-Colombians may also be involved.
Page and his wife, Paraguayan journalist Claudia Aguilera, announced their pregnancy on Instagram shortly before they were approached by two men on a private beach near their hotel. She told authorities that one of the men later shot Page.
Nimio Cardozo, a high-ranking officer with Paraguay’s National Police, arrived in the Colombian capital along with U.S. drug and other federal agents to assist in the investigation.
In the same news conference, Cardoso stressed that only a few people knew about Page’s planned vacation.
“We won’t stop until we catch those who are materially and intellectually responsible for this despicable behavior,” he said.