June 26, 2019 4:05
Updated June 26, 2019 17:23
In front of a dozen TV cameras, Commissioner Simonovis promised to give the United States information about the crimes of the Nicolás Maduro dictatorship that could shame the Venezuelan government.
Simonovis appeared in Washington before the press for the first time, because on May 16, Juan Guaidó, the president, granted him a pardon and could leave the house where he was arrested.
"I'm here in Washington for just one reason, I'm here because I'm going to have several meetings with various representatives of the government, Congress, State Department and research and intelligence agencies," said Simonovis, who worked for the Venezuelan police for years.
Its purpose is to provide the United States with information on crimes involving the Maduro regime (including military ones), in connection with drug trafficking of the Colombian guerrilla army of National Liberation and the alleged activities of the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah in Venezuela
United States justice investigates the alleged corrupt acts of about 30 people against the state-owned company Petróleos de Venezuela, and the government has imposed sanctions on corruption against countless people such as Raúl Gorrín, the owner of the Globovisión channel.
Simonovis wants his information to be used to store existing files or to investigate new cases.
The 59-year-old Venezuelan was arrested in 2004 and sentenced in 2009 to 30 years in prison for alleged responsibility for death in the so-called Puente Llaguno massacre during a failed coup in 2002 against the then president, Hugo Chávez. From 2014 he was under house arrest, guarded by several officials of the Bolivarian Intelligence Service and the police.
Immediately after Guaidó pardoned him, Simonovis escaped from the house with the help of active and military officers.
"These officials have provided me with a lot of information and information, which I bring here to somehow strengthen the existing files, and if not, open investigations in other matters that I present here," he explained.
Simonovis is to meet in the State Department with a special envoy of the United States for Venezuela, Elliott Abrams; On Tuesday, several Democratic and Republican legislators took part in the Congress, including Senator Marco Rubio, who advises the White House in Latin America.
During a press conference, the Venezuelan read his statements in a yellow notebook and sat at the table with his wife Bono de Simonovis and the opposition Francisco Marquez. His wife wore a white T-shirt with the colors of the Venezuelan flag.
A former police officer who was secretary of the security of the mayor of Caracas, he said he wanted to use his police training to "gain freedom" from Venezuela.
"After fifteen years in prison, I am here with you, giving a message of hope to Venezuela, because if I am here, it is possible to get freedom, Venezuela has the opportunity to achieve freedom and the best example is me," said Simonovis, considered by the opposition as "a prisoner political. "
He missed weeks and his arrival in Washington this week gave rise to hope among the Venezuelan opponents who are hoping a former policeman might give useful information to Donald Trump's government to move Maduro out of the Miraflores palace.