Maduro Allies Extradited to US On Money Laundering Charges

A senior US official said a high-profile fugitive close to Venezuela’s socialist government had been deported to the US to face money laundering charges.

Alex Saab boarded a plane chartered by the Justice Department from Cape Verde, where he was arrested 16 months ago while on a layover en route to Iran. Nicolás Maduro’s government described the trip as a diplomatic humanitarian mission.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity.

Previously, several media outlets in Cape Verde also reported on his extradition, citing unidentified sources. A public relations firm representing Saab said in an email that the Colombian businessman was taken from his home without notifying his lawyers.

Saab’s arrival to the US is expected to worsen relations between Washington and Caracas, possibly disrupting negotiations in Mexico between the Maduro government and the US-backed opposition. [vm/ft]

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