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Guard's complicity in synagogue vandalism confirmed

In a press conference on Monday, Tareck El Aissami, Minister of People’s Power for the Interior and Justice, confirmed that one of the guards of the synagogue in Maripérez (a Caracas neighborhood) was working in complicity with the head of the criminal group that broke into and vandalized the synagogue on January 31st.

The Minister explained that it was an inside job, meaning that the synagogue’s security system had its electricity cut from the inside to allow the group inside.  The group’s leader was a bodyguard of one the synagogue’s Rabbis.

El Aissami noted that 11 people are under arrest for this act, including eight officers from various police agencies, two common criminals and the guard from the synagogue.  He also said that he will ask for the arrests of others involved in the act.

Minister El Aissami publicly recognized officials from the Corps for Scientific, Penal and Criminal Investigations (CICPC) for their work in the investigations as well as for their professional conduct, as well as officials from the Public Ministry who led the criminal investigation.

On the morning of January 31st, a group of people entered the synagogue in Maripérez where they engaged in vandalism, an act which was categorically condemned by government authorities.  A special team from the CICPC was designated to investigate the incident in an objective and scientific manner.

However, a sector of the opposition made statements in which they tried to incriminate the national government as being responsible for the act.

For the Minister, this opposition tactic, which has been debunked by the investigation, was aimed at distorting the government’s investigation into the synagogue case.

Agencia Bolivariana de Noticias (ABN), Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela Press Office / February 10, 2009

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