Venezuelan Head Of Anti-Drug Trafficking Busted By US Feds For Drug Trafficking

Photo: REUTERS/David Mercado

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JP Carroll National Security & Foreign Affairs Reporter
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The former head the Venezuelan equivalent of the DEA was indicted by U.S. federal prosecutors, according to an indictment unsealed Monday.

A federal grand jury in Brooklyn indicted Nestor Luis Reverol Torres in January 2015 for allegedly being in the pocket of major drug traffickers from January 2008 to December 2010. During that time, he was in charge of La Oficina Nacional Antidrogas, or The National Anti-Drugs Office, known as ONA. Reverol was also previously in charge of the Venezuelan National Guard.

Edylberto Jose Molina was indicted on drug trafficking charges during his time as the sub-director of ONA. Molina is currently the military attaché at the Venezuelan Embassy in Berlin, Germany. Besides taking major bribes from drug smugglers moving cocaine into the U.S., the two drug czars used their authority “to stop or hinder ongoing narcotics investigations,” according to a U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) press release.

News of the indictments was a long time coming, given that in December 2015, individuals with knowledge of the case told Reuters that Reverol and Molina were in the cross-hairs of federal prosecutors. The two men are not alone for allegedly using their positions of power to get in on the drug trafficking business.

The former Speaker of the National Assembly of Venezuela, the equivalent of Speaker of the U.S. House, Diosdado Cabello, is under investigation by the DEA and DOJ, according to a May 2015 Wall Street Journal report. Venezuela shares a border with Colombia, which is the world’s largest cocaine producer.

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