Spanish national court suspends extradition of Venezuelan politician to US – JURIST
National Court of Spain suspended the extradition of former Venezuelan military officer Hugo Armando ‘El Pollo’ Carvajal Barrios to the United States on Friday following Carvaja’s appeal to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).
Carvajal, a former director of Venezuelan military intelligence (DIM) and a former politician, faces charges of drug and firearms trafficking in the United States. According to the US State Department, Carvajal led and managed the Suns Cartel while conspiring with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), a terrorist organization.
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York charged Carvajal with various crimes in March 2020. For example, the court found that Carvajal conspired to “transport and distribute large shipments of cocaine” and to “help supply arms of military quality to the FARC”. , including machine guns, ammunition, rocket launchers and explosive equipment. Following the court’s decision, the US State Department offered a reward of up to $10 million for information leading to Carvajal’s arrest.
In September, the Spanish Supreme Court fired Direct request from Carvajal for a precautionary measure. In doing so, the court found that Carvajal’s motion record failed to raise valid arguments or note any urgent circumstances necessary to permit a request for a precautionary measure. The court also observed that Carval had previously filed a motion asking that his extradition be suspended on the basis of a precautionary measure, which a lower court had rejected. The court noted that while this denial did not preclude Carvajal from filing the motion again, Carvajal should have raised new arguments in the subsequent motion.
The ECHR recently recommended that the Spanish National Court suspend Carvajal’s extradition as a precautionary measure pending the outcome of his appeal. The national court found the ECHR’s recommendation persuasive and granted Carvajal’s petition.