Home Trending News US indicts Venezuela’s Maduro on drug trafficking charges

US indicts Venezuela’s Maduro on drug trafficking charges

US offers up to $15m reward for information leading to the arrest of various Venezuelan nationals, including Maduro.

Maduro has long charged the US is attempting remove him via any means possible [Carolina Cabral/Getty Images]
Maduro has long charged the US is attempting remove him via any means possible. 

 

The United States government has brought criminal charges against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and several other Venezuelan officials, accusing them of involvement in drug trafficking and “narcoterrorism”, the Justice Department (DOJ) said during a news conference Thursday.

The charges allege concerted efforts in the trafficking of drugs, largely cocaine, in conjunction with the Colombian FARC group.

The DOJ brought the charges against Maduro, a socialist leader who already faces US sanctions and has been the target of a US pressure campaign aimed at pushing him from power, according to Reuters news agent.

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At least five other Venezuelans were charged in the indictment, including Diosdado Cabello Rondon, president of Venezuela’s National Constituent Assembly, Hugo Armando Carvajal Barrios, former director of the country’s military intelligence agency and leaders of the FARC.

Federal prosecutors are expected to allege that Venezuelan leaders took a major stake in the illicit drug trade in hopes of helping rebels in neighbouring Colombia.

The charges against Venezuelan government officials who were allegedly part of that effort, which started more than a decade ago under the government of the late of Hugo Chavez, according to the LA Times.

The Southern District of Florida also charged the head of the Venezuelan Supreme Court Chief Justice Maiekel Moreno of money laundering, officials said during the news conference.

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