Bancolombia president accused of fraud

5 January 2007

Jorge Londono, president of Columbia largest bank Bancolombia has been arrested.

The arrest comes following an investigation into the merger that established Bancolombia in 1997 when Banco Industrial Colombiano acquired a 51 per cent stake in Banco de Colombia for $418 million.

Mr Londono, along with Bancolombia Vice President Federico Ochoa, faces charges connected to the alleged misuse of public funds and inflating Banco Industrial Colombiano's share price and has been put under house arrest.

A statement from Bancolombia, the only Columbian from to be listed in the New York Stock Exchange, said the bank "reiterates its confidence in Colombian authorities with the conviction that the actions of Bancolombia and its senior management are in compliance with the law."

It added: "We emphasize that this decision is against Bancolombia's officers as natural persons and not against the bank, therefore this decision does not affect the equity of the entity or its solvency."

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