Only in Venezuela does the home of a reporter get raided by the police the day after the Human Rights Commission of the Organization of American States issues a precautionary measure ordering a Government to protect the same reporter.
But we have gotten used to such paradoxes in the revolution. Neither Venezuelan nor international law will stop the illegalities and abuses of the revolution against reporters or anyone else who dares challenge the “truth” according to the Government. Today it was the turn of Nuevo Pais reporter Patricia Poleo, whose home was raided by the investigative police by orders of Prosecutor Alejandro Castillo. Castillo has been after the reporter since the assassination of Prosecutor Danilo Anderson, since Poleo has been consistently exposing information which is leaked to her by sources close to the investigation.
Today’s search by the heavily armed cops was made to try to find evidence that would compromise those sources. Initially, the cops tried to take “evidence” independent of whether it had to do or not with the Anderson case, but her lawyers stopped them form taking anything unrelated. In any case, the law in Venezuela protects sources and the raid was illegal given that its only objective was to find out who Poleo’s sources are.
Curiously, Poleo mentions in her column today that on January 10th. she was called to testify by the same prosecutor, because her information was “too precise”. According to Poleo in that same column, there are internal conflicts within the police from day one, due to the murders of Antonio Castillo and Juan Carlos Sanchez and the irregular way in which the Guevara brothers were detained.
Poleo says that the cops also got mad at the hero treatment given to the murdered prosecutor, given what they knew about his illegal activities blackmailing those charged with rebellion for going to the Presidential Palace on April 12th. 2002. Poleo clearly has very good sources close to the investigation, in today’s column she even gives the telephone numbers of those people called, using Antonio Lopez’ telephone, after he had been killed. Most of the numbers are Cuban telephone numbers.
Poleo has been harassed repeatedly by the Chavez Government, with the OAS ordering precautionary measures for her protection a total of four times. Obviously the Chavez Government has never complied with these requests. Another bad day for democracy.