Venezuela: Two Opposition Mayors Held by Police amid Clampdown

EspañolAfter a hearing of eight hours last night, the Supreme Tribunal of Justice (TSJ) condemned the mayor of San Diego, Carabobo state, Enzo Scarano, to 10 months and 15 days in jail, and suspended his position of authority. His crime: failure to comply with the court’s order that he guarantee free transit throughout the city and disperse any barricade placed by demonstrators during protests.

Scarano, who won municipal elections last December with 75 percent of votes, will be held at the headquarters of the Bolivarian National Intelligence Service (SEBIN) until a judge determines the final location of his incarceration. The measure will also apply for the director of the Municipal Police, Salvatore Lucchese.

Another opposition mayor, Daniel Ceballo of San Cristóbal, Táchira, is also paying the consequences for protests in Venezuela. Minister of Interior, Justice, and Peace Miguel Rodríguez Torres said the court requested an arrest warrant for Ceballo. In his case, the alleged crime was civil rebellion and illegal or criminal association. SEBIN agents apprehended him last night, and Ceballo’s assistant claims that the arrest was made without a warrant.

Minister Rodríguez Torres said that the arrest of Ceballo, who won the elections last December with 67.86 percent of the vote, “will contribute greatly to restore peace and tranquility” in the city of San Cristóbal. “With the implementation of justice, things will return to normal quickly,” he said. Meanwhile, the opposition has called for protests to continue in Venezuela to demand the release of both mayors.

Source: El Universal and El Nacional.

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