Rewards Offered for Capture of Three Former Venezuelan Officials Charged in Miami Federal Court with Drug Trafficking and Other Crimes | USAO-SDFL

Miami, Fl. – Rewards are being offered for information leading to the arrest or conviction of three former Venezuelan officials who for years have failed to personally  appear in the Southern District of Florida to face publicly-filed federal drug trafficking charges.

U.S. Attorney Ariana Fajardo Orshan for the Southern District of Florida, and Acting Special Agent in Charge Keith Weis of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Miami Field Office, made the announcement.

Pedro Luis Martin-Olivares, 53, the former Chief of Economic Intelligence of the Venezuelan Intelligence Service (Servicio Bolivariano de Inteligencia Nacional (SEBIN)), was indicted in April 2015 by a federal grand jury sitting in Miami.  Martin-Olivares is charged with distributing more than five kilograms of cocaine knowing that it would be unlawfully imported into the United States, possessing with the intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine on board an aircraft registered in the United States, and conspiring with others to import more than five kilograms of cocaine.  (Case No. 15-cr-20299). 

Rodolfo McTurk-Mora, 58, the former head of Interpol in Venezuela, was indicted in April 2013, by a Miami federal grand jury. McTurk-Mora is charged with conspiring to import more than five kilograms of cocaine into the United States and with conspiring with others to corrupt and impede the South Florida federal prosecution of (now-convicted) narcotics trafficker Jaime Alberto Marin Zamora by delaying and preventing Marin Zamora’s extradition from Venezuela to the United States.  According to allegations in court records, through his official position as the head of Interpol, McTurk-Mora solicited bribes from traffickers arrested in Venezuela to prevent their extradition to the United States.   (Case No. 13-cr-20930).

Jesus Alfredo Itriago, 62, the former Chief of Counter-narcotics of a main criminal investigative agency in Venezuela (Cuerpo de Investigaciones Científicas, Penales y Criminálisticas (CICPC)), was indicted on January 31, 2013, by a federal grand jury sitting in Miami on a charge of conspiring with others to import more than five kilograms of cocaine into the United States. (Case No. 13-cr-20050).

The U.S. Department of State, through its Narcotics Rewards Program, is offering rewards for information leading to the arrest and/or conviction of each defendant as follows: up to $10 million for Martin-Olivares, up to $5 million for McTurk-Mora, and up to $5 million for Itriago.

“Corrupt Venezuelan officials who lined their pockets by protecting drug traffickers from detection and arrest enabled the entry of enormous amounts of dangerous drugs into the U.S., threatening the well-being of our nation,” said U.S. Attorney Fajardo Orshan.  “Whether they are former or current Venezuelan officials, whether they committed their crimes years ago or yesterday, whether we catch them tomorrow, months, or years from now, I promise one thing: The Department of Justice and its law enforcement partners will not rest until these criminals are brought to justice in the U.S.”

“The walls are closing in for Martin-Olivares, McTurk-Mora, and Itriago, all of whom face significant drug trafficking charges in the Southern District of Florida.” said DEA Miami Field Division Acting Special Agent in Charge Keith Weis.  “The rewards for information leading to their whereabouts and capture will add another significant level of pressure used by our investigators and prosecutors tasked with bringing them to justice.”

DEA Miami investigated these cases. The International Narcotics and Money Laundering Unit of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida is prosecuting them.  

These were Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigations.  The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt, and dismantle the highest-level drug traffickers, money launderers, and other priority transnational criminal organizations that threaten the citizens of the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence driven, multi-agency approach to combat transnational organized crime.  The OCDETF program facilitates complex, joint operations by focusing its partner agencies on priority targets, by managing and coordinating multi-agency efforts, and by leveraging intelligence across multiple investigative platforms.

In March of this year, the Department of Justice announced drug trafficking, corruption, narco-terrorism, and other criminal charges against Nicolas Maduro Moros and 14 Current and Former Venezuelan Officials, including charges filed by prosecutors in the Southern District of Florida. See press release: https://www.justice.gov/usao-sdfl/pr/nicol-s-maduro-moros-and-14-current-and-former-venezuelan-officials-charged-narco

Anyone with information that may lead to the arrest and/or conviction of these fugitives can email the DEA at CartelSolesTips@usdoj.gov, or message the DEA at 1-202-681-8187 using text messages, WhatsApp, or Signal.  Government officials and employees are not eligible for rewards. 

An indictment is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until found guilty.

You may find related court documents and information on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

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