- Associated Press - Saturday, March 18, 2017

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Federal prosecutors say a Texas lawyer who bills himself as the “DWI Dude” conspired to steal more than $1 million from Colombia’s largest rebel group.

Court records contend that 56-year-old Jamie Balagia conspired with two others to launder $1.2 million provided by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.

Authorities say FARC leaders were told the money would be used to bribe judges and others involved in the prosecution of a rebel leader on drug charges in Texas.

The San Antonio Express-News reports (https://bit.ly/2meK3Ku ) Balagia pleaded not guilty Thursday in federal court in North Texas to charges that include obstruction of justice.

Balagia is a former Austin police officer who markets himself to people facing drunken-driving and other charges.

His lawyer has not returned calls or emails from the Express-News seeking comment.

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Information from: San Antonio Express-News, https://www.mysanantonio.com


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