Page last updated at 22:06 GMT, Wednesday, 25 June 2008 23:06 UK

Colombian ex-lawmaker took bribe

President Alvaro Uribe (file image)
Mr Uribe and his government have denied offering favours to lawmakers

A former Colombian politician has been sentenced to three years' house arrest for taking a bribe to enable President Alvaro Uribe to stand for re-election.

Yidis Medina admitted she had accepted the bribe in return for her support in Congress for a constitutional change letting Mr Uribe run for a second term.

Mr Uribe and other high-ranking members of his government have denied offering her any inducements for her vote.

A number of politicians are under investigation over bribery claims.

Colombia's Supreme Court sentenced Medina to three years and four months of house arrest. She had faced a maximum sentence of eight years in jail.

She has been held without bail in Bogota since April.

The bribery allegations dated to 2004, when a constitutional change approved by Congress allowed Mr Uribe to stand for a second term. He won re-election in 2006 by a wide margin.

Medina told the court she had been offered political favours by government officials, with the knowledge of Mr Uribe, in return for changing her vote to support the amendment, El Tiempo newspaper reports.

Timeline: Colombia
08 Jun 08 |  Country profiles
Country profile: Colombia
04 Mar 08 |  Country profiles
Colombia's Uribe wins second term
29 May 06 |  Americas
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12 Nov 05 |  Americas
Uribe nearer to re-election bid
18 Jun 04 |  Americas

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