Spymaster won’t waive extradition to US

Venezuela’s former military spy chief told a Spanish court on Thursday that he won’t waive extradition to the U.S., claiming that the drug smuggling and other charges against him are politically motivated.

Defense lawyers for retired Maj. Gen. Hugo Carvajal claimed in the court that the U.S. sought the man who for nearly a decade controlled the secrets of Venezuela’s armed forces because that information had the potential to “topple” the current Venezuelan government.

Spanish and U.S. officials have in private cast doubts on Carvajal’s claims to hold information that would be currently relevant, as he retired shortly after Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro came to power in 2013. In 2014, the former general was arrested in Aruba on another drug warrant, but authorities in the Dutch Caribbean island rejected extraditing him to the U.S. and sent him back to Caracas.

Prosecutors in New York say Carvajal should face trial for “narcoterrorism.”

— The Associated Press

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