Venezuela’s government has issued arrest warrants for 13 individuals accused of being ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM) agents, alleging their involvement in sabotaging a recent referendum.
Attorney General Tarek William Saab stated that the named individuals, including members of opposition candidate Maria Corina Machado’s campaign team, conspired with ExxonMobil to undermine the referendum on Venezuela’s attempt to annex a section of Guyana.
Among those accused are campaign team members Roberto Abdul, Henry Alviarez, Claudia Macero, and Pedro Urruchurtu. Additionally, exiled lawmakers Yon Goicochea, Julio Borges, David Smolansky, Leopoldo Lopez, former interim president Juan Guaido, ex-oil minister Rafael Ramírez, former cabinet member Andres Izarra, and the head of the US-brokered dialogue with Venezuela, Lester Toledo, face charges including “treason, conspiracy, money laundering, and association to commit a crime.”
ExxonMobil swiftly denied the allegations, labeling them as “ridiculous and baseless.” The company emphasized the inconsistency of the claims with their business practices.
Notably, Carlos Vecchio, one of the accused, had previously worked for ExxonMobil before its departure from Venezuela in 2007. The accused individuals now confront serious legal charges as the Venezuelan government pursues its case.
Earlier in the week, the Venezuelan government reportedly told ExxonMobil and other offshore oil producers in the region that they have 90 days to stop operations in the disputed waters off the coast of Guyana, following reports that it directed state-owned companies to begin the exploration of oil, gas, and mines within Essequibo.
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