Biden-Maduro Dialogue Frees Two Americans

Biden-Maduro Dialogue Frees Two Americans

The Venezuelan government announced on March 7 that it would be releasing two jailed American citizens, including Gustavo Cardenas, one of the “CITGO 6” who were detained in 2017 and charged with embezzlement.  The other detainee, Cuban-American Jorge Alberto Fernandez, was charged with terrorism in February 2021 after bringing a drone into the country.CNN reported  in 2017 that the six had been summoned to Caracas via private jet on short notice for what they thought was an urgent business matter. Instead, all six were arrested, and President Maduro announced the next day that,“These people were born in Venezuela, they are Venezuelan, and will be judged as corrupt — thieves and traitors to the homeland.“The fate of the five other CITGO 6 detainees [executives of CITGO Petroleum’s U.S. branch] remains uncertain, as does that of two Venezuelan fugitives currently living in the U.S. who were convicted but never sentenced by the U.S. for corrupt practices linked to Venezuela’s state-owned Petro´leos de Venezuela, SA (PDVSA). CITGO, a Houston-based company, acquired by PDVSA over 30 years ago.Despite the recent diplomacy, U.S. citizens Jorge Toledo,José Luis Zambrano, Tomeu Vadell and Alirio José Zambran, as well as permanent U.S. resident José Ángel Pereira, remain in custody. The five, along with Cardena …

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