Saturday, September 21, 2013

Airplanes ferrying drugs and pseudo presidents out of Venezuela

Valls, French Interior Minister, receiving
Venezuelan exports to Paris
This week the post Chavez regime has made it into aeronautical news big time. On one hand it tried to make up an international scandal upon a presumed US denial of air space overflight, and on the other an Air France flight coming from Caracas was carrying over 1 ton of high grade cocaine estimated at 200 million euros street value. In both cases the heirs of Chavez look their worst.

Let's start with the aerial flyby that was not.

Apparently Maduro would have us believe that the nasty US did not want him to fly over Puerto Rico. But now that some of the dust settled it looks that the maneuver was a clumsy one to try to paint the US as evil, a maneuver that has all the looks of conspiracy judging how fast the friends of Maduro supported him: Evo and Correa. Neuman at the New York Times gives the full details, including the unnecessary detour over Puerto Rico when seasoned travelers to Paris from Caracas know they fly over either Guadeloupe or Martinique, according to the winds. The AP also echoes the doubt about how much of the "incident" was messy Venezuelan organization or deliberate entrapment to score an easy point. Interestingly the scene also revealed once again that Venezuelan presidents travel though Cuban planes, perpetuating the mystery as to whatever happened to the two presidential airplanes of the country, the inherited one from pre Chavez and the custom made airbus that costed gazillions and yet flew only a very few years with Chavez on board.

Whatever the political points Maduro and co. were trying to score (in preparation of a UN performance in a few days?), it was erased by the announcement that in Paris an Air France flight was found with enough unregistered luggage inside to carry 200 + millions worth of cocaine. We are talking over a ton here, carried in 30 bags not linked to any of the passengers in the flight. Paris claims 6 arrests already. No word of any arrest in Venezuela yet....... By the way, the French Interior minister says it was the biggest drug catch in the Parisian area ever.

So many questions....  First, let me start reminding the reader that there are a few high officials of the Venezuelan regime on the DEA shit list for drug trafficking, an update kindly provided in relation to this news by the LAHT.  Thus it is no surprise that Caracas airport at Maiquetia would be sooner or later the origin of a major drug scandal. After all, when you are a high ranking military in a narco-state eventually you do not see why you should not start using regular airports instead of country side landing strips for your airborne cargo.

Second, this level of gumption, 30 suitcases, through a major international airline, implies levels of narco corruption inside Maiquetia that are simply unexpected. 30 suitcases are not the same thing than trying to pass a single suit case with someone waiting for it in some European airport. We are talking major cooperation here, that has to include not only someone inside Air France but also the security system of the airport and its management. Amen of the reception committee in Paris. But that the French caught it and have already 6 arrests speaks volumes. The catch was dated on September 11 and published only today. Surely by today the French government must have warned the Venezuelan one and asked for a local investigation of which not a whiff was heard yet. Again: Venezuela is now a narco-state and arresting a single military (at least at the level of colonel for such an operation) would imply a major unraveling. So we can expect nothing, besides a pro forma declaration that an investigation will be done (note: they even got the date wrong, September 20 when it was the 11).

Third, for those who have had the misfortune to go through Maiquetia security this year. The Nazional Guard and the bolivarian militia make a big show to register luggage before check in, supposedly to find drugs and assorted stuff. They go as far as throwing to the garbage your snacks and presents (or keeping it for themselves) and even manhandle your underwear and sniff women's garments. Sniffed by the guard, not a dog. I know that from more than one person. I barely escaped the search last May because of a glitch in their system. Check-in lines at Maiquetia are horrendous because of that unjust search when in the past you had special scanners that have now disappeared, gone who knows where. Curiously on returns flights the search is light if any.......

If anyone has still a doubt, Venezuela is a Narco State now and I wonder if the huff and puff of Maduro against the US was not in prevision of they knowing what was coming from France......
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PS: added later. I wonder if the "defection" of Rafael Isea, former Chavez red boy, minister of wherever there was big money to manage, former Aragua state governor, may have any link to these stories. Isea after a week of rumors confirmed himself that he was in the US, resigning a juicy job at a revolutionary joint to finish a Masters he started 9 years ago.....

Isea was pointed out in major money laundering activities and was about to be formally investigated by the regime, now that he does not benefit anymore of Chavez protection.  He is reported having made a deal with the DEA in the US, though he denies it. Then again he does that only through twitter, unable to account for himself in person in front of journalists.

You draw your own conclusions. But I can assure you that Isea is just one among the many chavista crooks and that it is all a matter of internal account settings. Mafia style.

9 comments:

  1. Anonymous5:44 AM

    Difficult was it a commercial flight with passengers and freight or a cargo flight with
    acompany of several passengers except the crew?
    On the packages was written destination Geneva. AF loading bill is important who declared the shipping and came to collect these suitcases.

    Regards and wait for following up in Venezuela

    ReplyDelete
  2. Anonymous6:42 AM

    Particularly annoying as when you wait in the departure lounge and your name is called. Along with a group of others they dress you up in a fluorescent jacket and the GN frogmarch you downstairs for a search of your bags.
    And you're never sure if something has mysteriously found it's way in to your luggage. It's a bit nerve wracking but then they let you go satisfied in the knowledge that Venezuela does not tolerate civilian drug traffickers.
    Thinking about it it could have been worse. Ok an extra ton of weight is not a thing you want to have on board an aircraft but just imagine - it could easily have been something of an immediate danger.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Charly7:00 AM

      What I find particularly interesting is that the local Gestapo submits European airlines and their passengers to this humiliation but they would not dare do it to American Airlines. They know who to prod and the Europeans are really too much pussies especially considering that the rojo rojito carrion owes Air France more than 9 months exchange, somewhat like a couple of billion dollars, or is it Euros?

      Delete
    2. Anonymous8:36 AM

      That may be true but I suspect it may be worth asking which airlines solve the problem the "Venezuelan way".

      Delete
    3. Anonymous11:56 AM

      Maybe this was supposed to be a payoff to Air France (officials) for the debt due by Venezuela? The only assets left to trade are crude and coke.

      concerned

      Delete
    4. Anonymous12:19 PM

      Or maybe AirFrance asked once too often for their invoices to be paid. And this is what they got.

      Delete
  3. Island Canuck7:16 AM

    Report in CNN:
    http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/22/world/europe/air-france-cocaine-found/index.html?hpt=hp_t2

    The money quote:
    "Venezuelan authorities are also investigating. The country's Public Ministry said prosecutors will investigate, along with the Counterdrug Command of the National Guard in Simon Bolivar International Airport, to see if any criminal activity took place."

    To see if any criminal activity took place???
    The understatement of the year.
    And if this happened on Sept. 11 shouldn't we know by now if criminal activity occurred?
    Also The Counterdrug Command of the GN will investigate.
    Yeah, that should work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah...typical CNN........

      Delete
  4. Isea is interesting. Wonder if he is on a US student visa, which requires that he prove that he wishes to return to his home country? And which Washington DC university has accepted him, one wonders?

    ReplyDelete

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