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Latin Times
Latin Times
Pedro Camacho

As Tensions Between Venezuela and Chile Rise, A Damning News Report Against Maduro Goes Viral

Screengrab from Chilevisión Report on Ronald Ojeda's murder (Credit: Screengrab from Twitter)

A damning report by Chilevisión exposing how the Venezuelan Government could be behind the murder of Ronald Ojeda, a vocal critic of Maduro in Santiago, went viral yesterday.

The 21-minute video presents testimony from Héctor Barros, the lead prosecutor behind the case, in which he sustains that "we maintain that this was organized and the kidnapping and subsequent murder was requested from Venezuela" and that there are no leads that point to the murder being linked to organized crime.

The 32-year-old Ojeda was an ex-lieutenant who had fled Caracas for Santiago in 2017, where he lived as a political refugee. He was charged with treason by the Venezuelan government in January and abducted weeks later by four armed men who posed as officers of the Police of Investigations (PDI). After nine days of disappearance, the authorities found Ojeda's remains buried under a layer of cement in a camp.

In an interview with CNN Chile on March 25, Ojeda's widow stated that "there will never be any doubt" about Venezuela's authorship in the crimes committed against her husband.

During the report by Chilevisión, prosecutor Barros also dispelled the notion that El Tren de Aragua, the notorious Venezuelan criminal organization which has been terrorizing Chile in recent times, had anything to do with Ojeda's murder. "There is a degree of organization, of execution of this crime, that we had not seen before" said Barros. "El Tren de Aragua has never acted by staging a scene like the one created in this case, disguised as police officers, where they also took the trouble of bury him (Ojeda)1.40 meters deep and cement the place. The Tren de Aragua has never done that before."

The report comes at a volatile time between the Chilean and Venezuelan governments. Yesterday, Gabriel Boric recalled his ambassador in Caracas after the Venezuelan Foreign Minister labeled El Tren de Aragua "an act of fiction", adding that "Chile is well aware that labels for criminal gangs have been fabricated with the sole purpose of tarnishing the Venezuelan identity and its government."

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