The London Commercial Court has resumed the litigation between the constitutional government of Venezuela, headed by President Nicolás Maduro, and the self-proclaimed “interim president” Juan Guaidó, regarding the Venezuelan gold seized in the Bank of England.
The case was sent back to the London court by decision of the British Supreme Court, which last December accepted in part the appeal filed by Guaidó’s representatives on his alleged right to control the Venezuelan gold reserves in the Bank of England, valued at about $2 billion.
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The legal battle began in 2020, after the Bank of England refused to hand over the gold to the authorities of the Central Bank of Venezuela (BCV) appointed by the constitutional president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, arguing that it had received a similar request from the board appointed by Guaidó.
In a first instance, the London Commercial Court ruled that Guaidó had authority to dispose of the reserve of 30 tons of gold, because then British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt had recognized him as “interim president” in February 2019.
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The Court of Appeals overturned that verdict, however, on the grounds that the recognition of Guaidó as de jure president did not preclude Maduro from being recognized by the UK as the de facto president of Venezuela, given that UK continues to maintain diplomatic ties with the Maduro administration.
The British Supreme Court ruled in late 2021 that London’s recognition of Guaidó as the president of Venezuela is “clear and unequivocal,” but noted that the London Commercial Court has to consider whether to take into account the Venezuelan Supreme Court’s ruling that annulled the authority of the junta appointed by Guaidó.
scorinocohttps://orinocotribune.com/author/sahelicot92/May 27, 2023
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