Send by email

your name: email to: message:
Username: Email: Password: Confirm Password:
Login with
Confirming registration ...

Edit your profile:

Country: Town: State:
Gender: Birthday:
Email: Web:
How do you describe yourself:
Password: New password: Repite password:

Friday, April 20, 2018

The US will track assets of Venezuelans accused of corruption

Por Damian

Two members of the Treasury Department said recently that the United States agreed with fifteen nations to strengthen cooperation to locate and seize assets of Venezuelan officials accused of corruption. The officials spoke with The Associated Press under anonymity because the decision was made during a private meeting held at the headquarters of the International Monetary Fund.

In addition to the United States, the other countries that participated in the meeting were Germany, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Spain, France, Guatemala, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru and the United Kingdom.

"Concrete actions are necessary to prevent corrupt Venezuelan officials and their support networks from abusing the international financial system", Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement after the meeting. The goal is to trace Venezuelan illicit assets to seize them and then return them to the Venezuelan people once Nicolás Maduro is no longer in power.

You also want to prevent a bankrupt government from liquidating valuable assets abroad such as refineries and the oil company Citgo in its search for fresh money to keep it in power. The Panamanian Minister of Finance, Dulcidio De La Guardia, told reporters after the meeting that "the decision in relation to seizing assets is a decision of the judicial systems of each country. In the Panamanian case, the Executive has no authority to seize assets. That authority only has the Public Ministry".

Mnuchin said the countries evaluated how Maduro has refused to receive international humanitarian aid and uses food distribution as an element of social control. Washington has imposed sanctions on dozens of Venezuelan officials, including Vice President Tareck El Aissami, for his alleged involvement in drug trafficking.

The meeting took place while the South American nation is going through a humanitarian crisis that has caused a sharp exodus of Venezuelans to other countries. The nations also agreed to polish up the tools to assist Venezuela once it has a government supported by the international community.

Maduro will seek re-election next month in polls rejected by the opposition and several countries in the region because they believe they unfairly favor the government.

"The creditors, private or public, that provide new financing to Maduro´s regime are lending to a government without legitimacy to borrow in the name of Venezuela", Mnuchin added.

The IMF predicted this week that this year Venezuela will be the only nation on the continent in red despite the recovery in oil prices, with an estimated contraction of 15 percent and 6 percent in 2018 and an inflation rate that could surpass 13,000 percent.