Venezuela’s new chief prosecutor, President Nicolas Maduro’s former human rights ombudsman Tarek Saab, has outlined corruption accusations against his predecessor Luisa Ortega Diaz her husband.
The pair and other members of Ortega’s former staff of lawyers are accused of running a so-called “extortion gang” and funnelling funds to an offshore bank account in the Bahamas.
Ortega said on Twitter that the Venezuelan intelligence service had raided her house “as part of the government’s revenge for her fight against totalitarianism”.
She wrote: “Maduro’s government is trying to put an end to our struggle for democracy and freedom.”
En este momento el Sebin allana mi vivienda como parte de la venganza de este Gobierno por luchar contra el totalitarismo que existe en Vzla— Luisa Ortega Díaz (@lortegadiaz) 16 August 2017
De esta forma es que el Gobierno de Maduro y Cabello pretenden acabar con nuestra lucha por la democracia y la libertad de los venezolanos.— Luisa Ortega Díaz (@lortegadiaz) 16 August 2017
The case will be investigated by the country’s newly created truth commission, a panel many have compared to a Kangaroo court which is also looking into opposition candidates who are believed to have been involved in this year’s violent political protests.
Many have accused Maduro of trying to sideline the opposition in order to bolster his party’s flagging support.
Another concern is a bill that would sentence those who express “hate or intolerance” with up to 25 years in jail, a move the opposition fears will be use to silence critics of Maduro’s government.