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Green light to extradite Hugo Chávez’s former spy chief and his former nurse to the US

Two bad news for the Venezuelan regime arrived this Friday from Spain. Justice gave the green light to the extradition to the United States of former Venezuelan general Hugo “Pollo” Carvajal, former chief of intelligence for Hugo Chávez. Also from the former nurse of the creator of the Bolivarian experiment and former treasurer, the Venezuelan Claudia Patricia Díaz Guillén.

The novelty may complicate the regime due to the confidential information handled by the detainees in Spain.

The United States had already obtained the extradition of Alex Saab, the alleged businessman and figurehead of the Venezuelan autocrat Nicolás Maduro, who had been arrested in Cape Verde.

Carvajal, former head of the Venezuelan Military Counterintelligence Directorate, was arrested in Spain last September.

The extradition of Hugo Chávez’s former intelligence chief could complicate the Nicolás Maduro regime. Source: AFP

Money movements

In an effort to avoid extradition, he collaborated with the justice system detailing numerous operations of money movements of the Venezuelan nomenklatura to support allied political leaders including the previous Argentine Kirchnerist government.

“While I was director of Military Intelligence and Counterintelligence of Venezuela, I received a large number of reports indicating that this international financing was occurring,” Carvajal revealed, in a letter that was published by OK Diario de España.

Carvajal gave even more details. “Specific examples are: Néstor Kirchner in Argentina, Evo Morales in Bolivia, Lula Da Silva in Brazil, Fernando Lugo in Paraguay, Ollanta Humala in Peru, Zelaya in Honduras, Gustavo Petro in Colombia, Five Star Movement in Italy and Podemos in Spain All of these were reported as recipients of money sent by the Venezuelan Government, “he wrote.

Carvajal also tried to escape extradition with asylum requests that were denied, or claim the Spanish Supreme Court, which also rejected his appeal. Finally, in a ruling released this Friday, the magistrates considered it appropriate for the former agent to be transferred.

Claudia Patricia Díaz Guillén, personal nurse to the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, in a file photo.  Photo: EFE

Claudia Patricia Díaz Guillén, personal nurse to the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, in a file photo. Photo: EFE

Former nurse and treasurer

As for Díaz Guillén, the magistrates dismissed a “plea” appeal presented by the former nurse and former director of the National Treasury Office of Venezuela between 2011 and 2013.

A Florida court claims Díaz for crimes of money laundering and criminal organization for having favored businessman Raúl Gorrín, owner of the Venezuelan private channel Globovisión, when she was national treasurer.

Gorrín would have paid millions of dollars in bribes to Díaz Guillén and his predecessor in office, Alejandro Andrade. Also benefited from the plot was Díaz Guillén’s husband, Adrián Velásquez Figueroa, whose extradition to North America was approved by the National Court this November. Raúl Gorrín, in turn, was indicted in the United States for paying bribes and money laundering in 2018, the same year that former treasurer Andrade was sentenced in Florida to ten years in prison.

Díaz Guillén and her husband Velásquez Figueroa, a former member of the President’s Presidential Guard, were arrested for the first time in Spain in 2018 at the request of Caracas.

The police searched several departments belonging to the couple, where they found everything from jet skis to envelopes with diamonds, according to Venezuelan media. In 2019, the National Court ruled out extraditing them to Venezuela, arguing that their rights could be in jeopardy in that country. In December 2020, the couple were arrested again at the request of the US justice.

Source: EFE, AP and Clarín

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