Diosdado Cabello and Jose Vicente Rangel Avalos (aka Junior), the former governor of Miranda state and former mayor of Sucre District (Petare), respectively, are “untouchables,” says Tal Cual director Teodoro Petkoff.
Both former officials are confronted with numerous charges of corruption alleged to have occurred during their respective terms in power. They lost bids for re-election in November 2008, and their successors uncovered heaps of documented evidence showing that Cabello and Junior happily pillaged the public treasury for personal gain while in power.
That evidence rests in the hands of the Comptroller of the Republic and the Attorney General of the Republic, but absolutely no investigations to determine administrative and criminal responsibilities are under way.
Petkoff is a courageous person. Cabello and Junior are very dangerous men.
Cabello is minister of public works, minister of telecommunications, master of the country’s ports and newly-appointed presidential czar in charge of restructuring the financial system now that President Hugo Chavez has nationalized Banco de Venezuela, which was majority owned by Spain’s Santander group.
Cabello’s power is such that he has kept former Bolivar Banco owner Eligio Cedeno in a cell at Disip headquarters since 2007. The AG is prosecuting Cedeno for the Microstar import fraud over five years ago, officially. But the real reason Cedeno is in jail for the duration is that he crossed Cabello.
Junior is a bad dude, but not remotely as dangerous as Cabello. However, junior’s dad is Jose Vicente Rangel (aka Marciano aka Grima Wormtongue), and that makes Junior very dangerous because Grima is ruthless, unforgiving and lethal. The loose tongues say Junior and his dad aren’t very close, but blood is blood.
Former public prosecutor Danilo Anderson ran afoul of Grima Wormtongue back in 2004 when he was officially “investigating” opposition figures including businessmen, bankers and military officials who allegedly supported Pedro “El Breve” Carmona’s self-coronation on April 12, 2002.
In fact, Danilo and several of his AG buddies were running an extortion racket targeting many of the people who were being “investigated.” It worked like this: Pay up and the investigation will clear you, or don’t pay and we’ll nail you.
Unfortunately, Danilo messed with some of Grima Wormtongue’s longtime associates in the banking sector.
Danilo was killed instantly on 18 November, 2004 when a bomb placed under the driver’s seat of his SUV exploded while he was driving in Santa Monica. The bomb was sophisticated: C-4 rigged with a cell-phone trigger for remote detonation by speed dial.
In Venezuela, only the military and the state intelligence services like Disip have access to C-4. Sure, the stuff can be bought on the illegal arms market.
But Pablo Medina, the former chavista loyalist and ex-guerrilla who now bitterly opposes President Chavez, maintains that Grima Wormtongue was the intellectual author of Danilo’s car-bomb assassination.
And the people who built and detonated the bomb, then implicated the witless Guevara brothers, are Disip agents, adds Medina.
But Petkoff is a bit off when he places Cabello and Junior in the same company.
Cabello is truly untouchable, but Junior’s protection will evaporate the moment his dad breathes his last. Cabello will make it so.
Cabello and the other kingpins of the regime within a regime don’t like Junior, and only tolerate him because even Cabello is loath to start a fight with Grima Wormtongue.
As old timers in Virginia’s Shenandoah region would say: “Never get into a pissing contest with a skunk.”