BOGOTA — A paramilitary incursion from July 14 to 20 this year by private armed groups that combat guerrilla forces has made this municipality in the Colombia Plains Region into a mere ghost town though it was once a center of subversive influence of the FARC ( "The Colombian Revolutionary Armed Forces"), that country's oldest guerrilla group. Fear runs so rampant in this little village that even the special Prosecutors sent to investigate the massacre have felt its sting, as evidenced by their managing to take testimony in a record five (5) hours without once venturing forth from the Mayor's Offices. According to a military source, the Army received information on the presence of paramilitary groups in the region on July 14, the very same day that 120 or 150 armed men marched into the town of Mapiripan. The town's penal municipal judge, Leonardo Iván Cortés-Novoa, called the Army battalion commander in charge of the area eight (8) times to ask for assistance. Nevertheless, the army waited until July 21 to send in troops, after 25 of the townspeople had been torn limb from limb while still alive, according to Cortés and other residents who saw the victims forced into the town's slaughterhouse. Those present claim that members of the par amilitary groups savagely dismembered their friends with knives and machetes, throwing the severed arms and legs into the turbulent waters of the Guaviare River, which borders the town.