Caracas, August 4, 2022 (OrinocoTribune.com)—Earlier today, 17 people were sentenced in a ruling issued by Venezuela’s Court of First Instance in Judgment Functions with exclusive jurisdiction to hear cases related to crimes associated with terrorism and organized crime, for the case of the foiled assassination of the president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, on August 4, 2018 .
12 of the defendants were sentenced to 30 years in prison, the maximum sentence in the Venezuelan criminal code, while another five were sentenced to terms of 24, 20, 16, eight, and five years in prison. Former opposition deputy Juan Requesens was sentenced to eight years in prison for the crime of conspiracy.
In addition, the aforementioned court urged the Public Ministry to promote the process against the opposition leader Julio Borges, who fled Venezuela immediately after the failed terrorist attack, and was living until recently in one of the most expensive neighborhoods in Bogotá, Colombia, protected by President Ivan Duque.
Local and mainstream media promoted the narrative of the failed assassination attempt as a distraction or a fake plot organized by the Venezuelan government, but were silenced when CNN published an article explaining all the preparations held in the United States and Colombia for the terrorist attack. Even today, some propaganda outlets use the term “alleged” to describe the criminal actions of these individuals, despite the fact that they have now been legally sentenced.
Former Primero Justicia deputy Requesens sentenced to 8 years in prison for participation in drone assassination attempt against Maduro in 2018. He has been in jail for almost 4 years. Julio Borges was part of the plot but he escaped to Colombia! Democrats they call themselves 🤢 https://t.co/8zis9xoQR5
— Orinoco Tribune (@OrinocoTribune) August 4, 2022
Juan Carlos Monasterios Vanegas, Argenis Gabriel Valera Ruíz, José Miguel Estrada González, Oswaldo Gabriel Castillo Lunar, Alberto José Bracho Rozquez, Brayan De Jesús Oropeza Ruíz, Henriberth Enmanuel Rivas Vivas, Yolmer José Escalona Torrealba, Emirlendris Carolina Benítez Rosales, Yanin Fabiana Pernia Coronel, Alejandro Pérez Gámez, and Pedro Javier Zambrano Hernández were all sentenced to 30 years in prison.
Ángela Lisbeth Expósito Carrillo was sentenced to 24 years in prison. The citizens Héctor Armando Hernández Da Costa was sentenced to 16 years in prison, José Eloy Rivas Díaz was sentenced to 20 years in prison, and Wilder Anderson Vásquez Velásquez was sentenced to five years in prison for his involvement in the assassination attempt.
Venezuela’s Public Ministry was ordered to request arrest warrants against the citizen Adriana Rosa Bronbin Baez, and requested to support the process against the citizens Julio Borges, Virginia Antonieta Da Silva Pi Porta, Osman Alexis Delgado Tabosky, Josser Eduardo López, Rayder Alexander Russo Márquez, Yilbert Alberto Escalona Torrealba, Gregorio Jose Yaguas Monjes, and Beaumont Álvarez David Alexander.
Earlier, the attorney general of Venezuela, Tarek William Saab, announced the completion of the trial of the 17 criminals, as reported by Venezuelan news outlet Alba Ciudad.
Saab recalled that on August 4, 2018, there was “the activation of two explosive devices incorporated into two unmanned aircraft, which intended to assassinate the president of the Republic while he was offering his speech for the 81st anniversary of the Bolivarian National Guard. These detonations caused injuries to several military officials” participating in the parade.
The attorney general noted that the trial began on December 2, 2019: “91 hearings were held, 60 experts participated, 193 acting officials testified, and 36 civilian witnesses testified. There was the opportunity [to hear all versions], as the law implies, of due process.”
The crimes committed by those sentenced to 30 years in prison
• General Alejandro Pérez Gámez: at the time of the events, was serving as director of the Services for the Maintenance of Internal Order of the Bolivarian National Guard (GNB). He was sentenced for passing on information about the site where the event for the 81st anniversary of the GNB would be held on August 4, 2018, with President Maduro present.
• GNB Colonel Pedro Javier Zambrano Hernández sent messages to the perpetrators of the attack.
• Juan Carlos Monasterio Vanegas, a retired senior sergeant major (GNB), was arrested for his participation in the assault on Fort Paramacay, located in Valencia, Carabobo, on August 6, 2017. However, in the drone attack file he is listed as the person who allegedly recruited the 11 participants in the action of August 4, 2018, for training at the Atlanta farm, located in Chinacota, Colombia, according to his own testimony. Those recruited are also accused of acting in the violent protests of 2014 and 2017 called for by a sector of the opposition.
• The pilots of the two drones activated with C4 explosives in front of the stage, Bryan de Jesús Oropeza Ruiz, Argenis Gabriel Valera Ruiz, and Alberto José Bracho Rosques, received maximum sentences. In addition, Yanín Fabiana Pernía Coronel was convicted for providing logistics for that action.
• Yolmer José Escalona Torrealba, an explosives expert, received the drones in Barquisimeto (Lara) for their preparation with C4, according to the investigation.
• Emirlendris Carolina Benítez Rosales is a businesswoman listed as an alleged collaborator in the failed attack.
• Oswaldo Gabriel Castillo Lunar confessed through a video to being a member of the so-called Active Resistance. Castillo was one of those who trained in the Colombian camp to fly the drones. “I asked Mrs. Genesis who was financing this, she told me that the financier of all this is called Julio Borges,” Castillo confessed.
• Henrybert Enmanuel Rivas Rivas was the ringleader of the operation, as stated at the time by the then Minister of Communication, Jorge Rodríguez. Rivas said in a video that after the attack they tried to get him out of Venezuela with the collaboration of the Chilean embassy. “I lasted five months in the camp,” he said. “We practice the handling of the drones a lot.”
• José Miguel Estada González was also sentenced for participation in the preparation of the drones.
• Angela Lizbeth Exposito Carrillo was sentenced to 24 years for hosting Henrybert Emmanuel Rivas Rivas, leader of the operation, in her home.
• Jose Eloy Rivas Diaz, owner of the company Stand Electronic, was sentenced to 20 years for paying for the lodging and providing electronic equipment for the operation.
• General Hector Armando Hernandez Da Costa was sentenced to 16 years for participating in the preparations for the drone attack.
— REDRADIOVE (@RedRadioVe) August 4, 2022
• Juan Requesens (former deputy of the Justice First party) was sentenced to eight years for his role in the assassination attempt. In a video he declared details of the operation and his performance in it: “I was contacted by Julio Borges, who asked me the help him moving a person from Venezuela to Colombia; it was Juan Monasterio.”
Requesens was arrested a few hours after the assassination attempt. Since August 2020, he has been given the judicial benefit of house arrest. In legal terms, he has already served half of his sentence, so he may soon be eligible for additional judicial benefits.
• Wilder Anderson Vasquez Velasquez was sentenced to five years for helping to coordinate the logistics of the attack.
Orinoco Tribune special by staff