Court includes Ecuador’s ex-President Correa in kidnap probe

QUITO, Ecuador (AP) — Ecuador’s highest court has ordered former President Rafael Correa included in an investigation into a 2012 botched kidnapping of an opposition lawmaker.

The judge in charge of the case gave Correa a month to clear his name. He has not been charged.

The proceedings Monday dealt with an investigation into Fernando Balda’s kidnapping in Bogota after he fled to Colombia’s capital to escape what he considered persecution by Correa.

A Colombian court found that Balda’s abductors were hired by members of Ecuador’s intelligence agency at the time Correa was president. Three other top intelligence officials are also under investigation.

Correa said on social media he has no idea why he is being linked to the probe. Supporters outside the court said Correa was the target of a smear campaign.