US partially dismissed money laundering charges against Maduro envoy

The U.S. partially dismissed money laundering charges against Alex Saab, an envoy for Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro.

U.S. District Judge Robert Scola dismissed seven of the eight charges against Saab to abide by the agreement the U.S. made with Cape Verde for Saab’s extradition, Reuters reported

One count of conspiracy to launder money is still held against Saab, with a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. 

Saab was extradited from Cape Verde to the U.S. back in October on the condition he couldn’t face more than 20 years in prison, the maximum sentence allowed on Cape Verde, The Associated Press reported.

Saab was originally facing eight charges as the U.S. accuses Saab of using a low-income housing project in Venezuela to pocket $350 million in a bribery scheme. 

Venezuela has denounced Saab’s extradition calling it kidnapping and said a confession from Saab would be a threat to Venezuela’s national security. 

The U.S. has gone after Saab for years saying Saab knows how Maduro and government officials have used government contracts to enrich themselves. 

After the extradition of Saab, Venezuela stopped negotiations with U.S.-backed opposition in Mexico that were centered around the humanitarian crisis in the socialist regime. 

The country also jailed six U.S. oil executives following Saab’s extradition with the U.S. previously denouncing the charges against the executives as politically motivated. 

Saab’s arraignment date was set for Monday but has been pushed back to Nov. 15.

Tags Alex Saab Corruption in Venezuela Extradition Nicolás Maduro Politics of Venezuela

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