Was Jean Pierre Gontard the source of the Betancourt ransom story?

UribeThe LA Times is reporting that the Colombian government is pointing their finger at Geneva-based Jean Pierre Gontard as the source for the Swiss radio report claiming a ransom for the release of the hostages. Left-wing blogs are reporting that Gontard was well on his way to arranging a negotiated release for the hostages when they were trumped by the military operation last week.

Gontard’s name is also mentioned in connection with the seized laptops, with some in Colombia accusing him of ‘unauthorized contacts’ with FARC. Chinese media is reporting that Gontard supposedly gave $500,000 to the FARC.

Perhaps the Colombia government doesn’t like this guy and wanted to tar him with this accusation. It will be difficult for him to resume a negotiator (for anything) if he is considered a leaker of information.

My bets are still on FARC supporters in Europe, either left-wing groups or drug dealers pushing through the story to help keep FARC alive.

But I’m still looking around for other theories.