Venezuela's first anti-drugs czar, Mildred Camero, who was replaced shortly after Venezuela broke with the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), says the situation in Venezuela is chaotic. In a serious accusation. Camero claims that many of the assets seized from alleged narco-traffickers have been "diverted" or are being used by National Anti-Drugs Office (ONA) officials for personal matters.
Camero does not think much about the new reform law, stating that it seems to have been passed to collect more money.
The current ONA, Camero muses, has more money than many ministries. An indignant former judge slams the State for seizing assets whether the person accused is guilty or not and without finding out where the assets came from.
Camero launched the accusations in an interview with El Nacional criticizing the fact that the assets are set to use immediately and posed the question: what will be returned to the accused if s/he is absolved "there must be other ways to protect property without officials using assets that's corruption."
Speaking about rivalries between the National Guard (GN) and Police Detective Branch (CICPC), Camero admitted that the GN had excelled in anti-drugs activities, while the CICPC was better prepared in matters of investigation.
When asked about the latest developments, Camero warned that Mexican cartels are operating in Venezuela making things more chaotic because the groups have become atomized and "we are afraid to recognize the fact."
The Sinola cartel has been busy in Venezuela and Carabobo merits special attention because she has heard that the Russian mafia is muscling in, along with ETA (?) and the Sicilians.
In a parting shot, Camero agreed with the question that the authorities were biased in favor of certain groups and that only the small fry have been imprisoned.
Patrick J. O'Donoghue
November 29, 2010
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Former anti-drugs czar questions seizure and use of narco assets