Venezuela’s Ex-Prosecutor: President Maduro is involved in Corruption

Published: 24 August 2017

By Vanja Lakic

A day after President Nicolas Maduro said he would seek an international arrest warrant against her, Venezuela’s sacked chief prosecutor accused him of corruption, Business Insider reported on Wednesday.

"I want to denounce, in front of the world, a grave situation in Venezuela: that of excessive corruption," Luisa Ortega said at a press conference in Brazil.

She claimed she had evidence that President Maduro and Socialist Party titans such as Diosdado Cabello and Jorge Rodriguez have ties to the Odebrecht scandal.

Ortega alleged that Cabello received some US$ 100 million from the construction company that was charged with paying about US$ 788 million in bribes across 12 countries in Central and South America and in Africa to win contracts between 2001 to 2016.

"I have a lot of proof, concretely in the Odebrecht case, which implicates many high-ranking Venezuelans, starting with the president of the republic," Ortega said, according to the BBC.

In late March, Ortega, 59, who was Venezuela’s top law enforcement officer for nearly a decade, unnerved the Madura regime when she declared that two Supreme court decisions to strip the opposition-controlled National Assembly of its remaining powers had broken the constitutional order, Americas Quarterly reported.

She fled the country after she was removed from her position early this month by Venezuela’s newly formed constituent assembly, a pro-government body that has widely been branded as dictatorial.

She was accused of having ignored corruption cases the government had sent to her.

Ortega’s husband was charged with extortion, according to the BBC. She landed in Brazil Wednesday morning and is expected to seek asylum in the US.

Maduro said on Tuesday he would seek an international arrest warrant against the couple he accused of working with the US - a country he blames for many of Venezuela’s problems including high inflation, shortages of basic goods and anti-government unrest.

Ortega said she would present her evidence against Maduro’s regime to authorities in the US, Spain, Mexico, Brazil and Colombia.