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Ex-Venezuelan general detained in Spain

Ex-Venezuelan general detained in Spain”

Former Venezuelan general Hugo Carvajal, head of military intelligence under Hugo Chavez, was held in temporary detention Saturday while Spain waits for a formal United States extradition request on charges of cocaine trafficking, judicial sources said.

During the hearing, Carvajal denied links with drug trafficking and Colombia's FARC rebel group and challenged his potential extradition to the United States, the spokesman said.

He denies links to drug trafficking and plans to fight the US extradition request on the grounds of having ties in Spain, where his family now resides.

The Spanish High Court ruled today (Saturday) that Hugo Carvajal should remain in custody until a decision is reached on the extradition request. Carvajal threw his support behind opposition leader Juan Guaido in February and urged his military peers to join him.

In 2014, Carvajal was arrested on the Dutch Caribbean island of Aruba on a us drug trafficking warrant, but the Dutch government accepted Venezuela's argument that he had diplomatic immunity because he had been nominated consul to Aruba.

The judge ruled that Carvajal should be kept in custody while a USA extradition request for him is considered by a court.

Carvajal also provided FARC with official Venezuelan government identification documents that allowed its members to travel to and from Venezuela, OFAC said.

In 2014, Carvajal was arrested on the Dutch island of Aruba where he was Venezuela's consul, but he fled back to Venezuela after claiming diplomatic immunity.

Maduro then ousted Carvajal and the former military man was accused of "acts of treason".

Guaido was later recognised by the United States and dozens of governments, but Maduro remains in office with the support of the military and has denounced Guaido as a puppet of Washington.



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