Colombian football team's president shot dead in drive-by murder
Tigres de Bogota president is shot dead in a brutal motorcycle drive-by murder in front of his daughter after Colombian team lost at home
- The 64-year-old was driving home from the 3-2 home defeat when targeted
- His daughter was uninjured despite bullet ‘grazing her temple’ whilst in the car
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The president of a Colombian second division football team was fatally shot dead by hitmen after his club’s defeat on Saturday night.
Edgar Paez had been at the helm of Tigres de Bogota since 2016, and was driving home from the club’s Metropolitano de Techo stadium in the capital city when he was targeted by two men on a white motorbike.
The 64-year-old received four shots to the neck and skull, and despite a swift transfer to the Mederi Clinic, Paez died at the hospital from the severity of his injuries.
Second-division Tigres FC had earlier lost 3-2 to Atletico FC de Cali at their home ground.
The two hitmen were thought to be trailing the vehicle shared by Paez, his wife, and his daughter after leaving the stadium for several minutes before the attack, and quickly fled the scene.
Tigres de Bogota president Edgar Paez was murdered in a drive-by shooting in the capital on Saturday evening
Paez’s daughter in the passenger seat was uninjured in the fracas, which was caught by a number of security cameras on Avenida de las Americas where the attack took place.
According to an interview with her uncle – Paez’s brother – Wilson on the television programme NotiCentro1, his niece was lucky to survive after a bullet ‘grazed her temple’.
‘Fortunately, my niece (Edgar’s daughter) is alive, because one of her bullets grazed her temple,’ Wilson Paez shared. ‘In the midst of this tragedy we have the consolation of knowing that she is fine.’
As per Colombian outlet El Tiempo, two presidents of Colombian football teams – who spoke on the condition of anonymity – suggested that Paez’s death could be related to sports betting.
As recently as last week, president of Colombia’s top flight Major Football Division (Dimayor) Fernando Jaramillo confirmed in an interview with SEMANA that the league had received ‘alerts’ about instances of match-fixing in the league below, where Tigres FC plays, but did not specify which clubs were under scrutiny nor share any further details.
But Wilson Paez emphatically denied rumours that his brother’s death was linked to illicit activities, stating: ‘They are pure speculation. Some journalists and media tend to weave very delicate theories into their information, but they do not reflect the true reality.
‘Some suggest that he could be involved in money laundering or drug trafficking, which is far from his economic situation and the results of the investigations against him.’
In a statement in the wake of Paez’s death, Dimayor pledged to pay tribute to the president with black armbands and a minute’s silence in a slew of the league’s fixtures and competitions.
Teams facing one another are set to hug during the silence in a show rejecting violence and symbolising fair play and unity.
Tigres shared their own statement in the wake of their president’s death that spoke to the importance of Paez and his seven-year tenure in charge in Bogota.
‘With deep sadness and dismay we report the murder of the president of our institution, Dr. Edgar Paez Cortes,’ the statement read. ‘This unfortunate incident took place today when he was returning to his home, after the match played against Atletico FC.’
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The murder took place in Colombia’s capital city Bogota where Tigres FC were playing at home
‘The Tigres family and the sports community are devastated by this event. Edgar Paez Cortes was a passionate defender of football and an exemplary leader. ‘His commitment to the team and his dedication to the development of the sport in our region left an indelible mark on all who had the privilege of knowing him.’
‘We appreciate the respect of the media and the community in this difficult time. The authorities will be in charge of the pertinent investigations.’
Before taking over at Tigres FC, Paez was an investor in another team, Independiente Santa Fe, between 2004 and 2007.
In 2010, the club was investigated for alleged money laundering for drug cartels, but as per InfoBae, links between Paez and the multi-million dollar operation proved inconclusive.
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