MIAMI (AP) — Five U.S. service members were confined to quarters after violating curfew at the same Colombian hotel where Secret Service agents are accused of misconduct, military authorities said Saturday.
The service members also “may have been involved in inappropriate conduct” at the hotel in Cartagena, Colombia, according to Miami-based U.S. Southern Command.
The command said the service members were isolated in their quarters in Colombia and would return to the U.S. at the end of the Summit of the Americas.
The service members were assigned various roles to work with the Defense Department and the Secret Service to support U.S. government security at the summit before President Barack Obama’s arrival there, said Col. Scott Malcom, chief of public affairs for Southern Command.
Air Force Gen. Douglas Fraser, the commander of Southern Command, said any punishment would follow an investigation. Fraser also said he was “disappointed by the entire incident” and that their behavior “is not in keeping with the professional standards expected of members of the United States military.”
The service members’ names and assignments for the summit were not immediately available.
White House spokesman Jay Carney said the service members were part of the same incident involving the Secret Service.
The Secret Service sent home about a dozen agents for misconduct that occurred at their hotel before Obama’s arrival in Colombia on Friday; The Associated Press confirmed that the behavior in question involved prostitutes.
Malcom said Southern Command was still investigating what tasks the service members were performing in Colombia, and what they did at the hotel. The five were staying at the same hotel as the Secret Service agents who were recalled, he said.
“The only misconduct I can confirm is that they were violating the curfew established,” Malcom said.
Malcom said he could not confirm whether the service members also participated in the alleged involvement with prostitutes.
The hotel’s managers had provided the service members’ names along with the Secret Service agents’ names to local police who were investigating at the hotel, Malcom said.
The Secret Service was investigating exactly what happened.
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