A former Venezuelan oil official fled the country and is talking to US officials about his investigation into high-level corruption Plan Which helped the oil rich nation sink into the economic recession.
According to a person familiar with the case, Carmelo Urdaneta Aqui, a lifelong legal adviser to the country’s powerful oil ministry, will appear in Miami federal court. According to one person in the discussions, he is expected to appear soon on Monday, according to the charges in 2018, which were against him and several other connected Venezuelans.
Urdaneta fled Venezuela last week and was picked up on the Colombian border by US federal agents who brought him to Florida, the person said. According to documents filed on Monday, Urdanetta has attorneys representing him in Miami.
The Justice Department in Miami did not immediately comment. Urdaneta’s lawyers did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Urdaneta may provide US prosecutors with the vision of President Nicolas Maduro’s entourage and business elites to become wealthy in Venezuela, many of whom are focusing the US investigation of corruption on their one-time powerful oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela. PDVSA, as is known, has been affected in recent years by contributions, mismanagement and acrimony to the country’s humanitarian crisis. Earlier this month it was said that hundreds of billions of dollars have been looted from Venezuela by Venezuela.
In their 2018 charges filed in Miami, US prosecutors say professional launders worked to hide the $ 1.2 billion movement stolen through bribes and fraud from PDVSA, Venezuela’s primary source of income and foreign exchange. Urdaneta was charged in that case along with eight others, three of whom have already been convicted.
Matthias Krull, a former banker to Julius Baer, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for his role. Plan.
The United States has approved an aggressive crackdown on more than 150 Venezuelans associated with fraud and corruption in the Latin American nation. The Justice Department has pursued several corruption cases related to the country. Earlier this year, federal prosecutors in New York announced large-scale drug trafficking charges involving either the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucarias de Colombia or the FARC against Maduro and other Venezuelan officials.
The Trump administration also supported opposition leader Juan Giado and increased pressure and sanctions on Maduro’s government.
– with assistance by Ben Bartenstein