Spanish court allows extradition of ex-Chavez bodyguard
MADRID (AP) — Spain’s National Court has agreed to extradite to Venezuela a former bodyguard of the country’s late leader Hugo Chavez.
The court ruled Friday that Adrian Velasquez Figueroa can go home to face charges of corruption and money-laundering.
The court had previously ruled that his wife, Claudia Diaz, a one-time Chavez nurse, should also be extradited on the same charges.
Figueroa’s lawyer argued, among other things, that his client should not be sent home because Venezuela doesn’t respect human rights.
But the National Court said in its written ruling that political persecution in Venezuela is directed at opponents of Nicolas Maduros’ regime, not at those who belonged to Chavez’s government.
Defense lawyers for Figueroa and Diaz have said they will lodge appeals.