Despite the denial by the Prime Minister of Cape Verde, Ulisses Correia that he was involved in the ‘illegal’ arrest of embattled Venezuelan diplomat, Alex Saab, new findings has revealed that the Prime Minister was directly involved in the arrest which had led to lot of international agitations.
A highly placed source, a security agent close to the case, who pleaded anonymity revealed that two individuals — Natalino Correia and Paulo Rocha — were prominently involved in Saab’s arrest on June 12, 2020.
The source explained that Natalino Correia, an airport police officer, was the one who entered the plane carrying an Interpol red alert, which has now been found to be false, to withdraw the Special Envoy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in contravention of international norms.
While it initially appeared that Correia acted alone, sources have revealed that the operation by Correia was planned by Paulo Rocha who is a close friend of Cape Verde’s Prime Minister, Ulisses Correia, and encubier to from the United States to Cape Verde together with agents of the Administration of Drug Control (DEA).
Rocha who is Cape Verde’s Minister of Interior, also reportedly has files for drug trafficking and extrajudicial killings.
A clear indication that the US government was involved in the whole operation is that few days after arresting Saab, Natalino Correia and another employee, Ary Varela were decorated and qualified as “heroes” by the US Department of State for being “fundamental figures to hold drug traffickers criminally accountable of people and helping the victims to obtain justice in Cape Verde”, as stated in the official website.
Saab was arrested and detained in Cape Verde based on the request of the Donald Trump led United States government during a stop over on his way to Iran over allegations of money laundering, a move the Venezuelan government faulted with claims that the businessman is its special envoy on a humanitarian mission.
The Venezuelan government claimed that before his arrest, Saab had been on a mission to get food and medical supplies in Iran, stopping over in Cape Verde where he was arrested by security operatives.
The failure of Cape Verdean authorities to obey the ruling of the ECOWAS court by extraditing Saab to the US is not the first contempt for court order by the authorities since his detention last year.
Saab was denied access to any member of his defense team despite three court rulings granting him the right to do so.