U.S. Pushes to Extradite Second High-Level Venezuelan

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Hugo CarvajalRadio Corporation

Venezuela's former spymaster, Hugo Carvajal, 61, also known as "El Pollo" (The Chicken), might be joining Alex Saab, Venezuelan financier, in the U.S. soon. Spain's high court has ruled that Carvajal should be extradited to the U.S. to face charges for working with Colombia's Farc terrorist group, weapons, and drug smuggling.

Part of the push to sweep the globe for wanted Venezuelans is to continue pressuring Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro to leave. The U.S. is backing the opposition, and it's been speculated that Carvajal could have incriminating evidence against Maduro, which the U.S. might use, especially with the country's upcoming elections about to take place.

His arrest in Spain last month came after a long global manhunt took place. Carvajal had been hiding and moving from apartment to apartment to evade capture after an earlier Spanish court decision ruled he was to be extradited. Carvajal still has the legal right to appeal once more and this would delay his extradition, assuming he doesn't escape.

The U.S. State Attorney's Office posted the charges against Carvajal as:(1) participating in a narco-terrorism conspiracy; (2) conspiring to import cocaine into the United States; (3) using and carrying machine guns and destructive devices, possessing machine guns and destructive devices in furtherance of, the narco-terrorism and cocaine importation conspiracies; and (4) conspiring to use and carry machine guns and destructive devices, possess machine guns and destructive devices in furtherance of, the narco-terrorism and cocaine importation conspiracies.

Maduro y GuaidóDunca File Photo

U.S. and Venezuela at Odds

Since the last election, the U.S. and Venezuela have been at odds, which the U.S. claims was a fraud, naming Juan Guaidó as "Interim President," funding his exile and refusing to work with Mauro. This has infuriated the Maduro government, which has led to human casualties.

Venezuela is currently holding nine Americans in prison since the election. The U.S. has deemed them, political prisoners. The U.S. just extradited Maduro's top alleged financier to Miami, Florida, Alex Saab, after holding him under house arrest for more than a year on a little-known African island, Cape Verde.

The U.S. has levied many sanctions against Venezuela and blocked them from receiving COVID-19 emergency funds from the IMF, using its majority influence. Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodriguez said, "Venezuela reiterates its denunciation that the IMF refuses to deliver our people the $5 billion our country is owed to fight the pandemic."

The rift between U.S. and Venezuela isn't over. In an interview this week, Ahmad Sobhani, former Iranian Ambassador to Venezuela, said that the two countries would work together to create a payment system outside of "illegal" U.S. sanctions.

"On the launch of the SWIFT system between our two countries, it is natural that both countries facing illegal U.S. sanctions seek ways for transfer of money in different ways like using national currencies," said Sobhani.

The political battle has no end in sight.

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