Still on the subject of the Venezuela/INTERPOL brouhaha over INTERPOL’s refusal to issue certain Venezuelan Red Notice requests, today’s post addresses one of INTERPOL’s suggested remedies for the ongoing dispute.  Recall that the Venezuelan government is none too happy about INTERPOL denying many of its Red Notice requests for wanted banking officials.

As referenced in the last post, INTERPOL General Secretary Ronald K. Noble visited Venezuela and was to have proposed “opening direct channels of communication between Venezuela’s Fiscalia and INTERPOL’s Office of Legal Affairs.”  This proposal was to have been made with INTERPOL’s stated goal of ensuring that “cases that comply with INTERPOL’s rules for the issuance of Red Notices can be identified.”

Communication is good.  Of concern is the idea that an politically motivated request may, after discussion with the Office of Legal Affairs, be tweaked by Venezuelan authorities just enough to pass muster and lead to the issuance of a technically correct, but still improperly motivated Red Notice.  

INTERPOL expressed an interest in improving its understanding of Venezuela’s banking fraud laws, and also implied that Venezuela might brush up on its understanding of INTERPOL’s rules regarding the requirements for Red Notices to be issued.  

Hmmm.  Diplomatically speaking, INTERPOL’s suggestion seems appropriate.  However, if I may be so bold, I’d suggest another refresher course:  Venezuelan authorities may wish to consult the laws of their own Republic prior to taking legal action and issuing arrest warrants.  

It is well-documented that many Venezuelan prosecutors and law enforcement officials, as well as jurists, have no real autonomy to properly carry out their duties as dictated by law, and are under such incredible political pressure from Hugo Chávez that the rule of law in Venezuela is sometimes more of an exception than a rule.

Will enhanced communication between INTERPOL and Venezuela bring a halt to Venezuela’s politically motivated Red Notice requests?  Only time will tell.

As always, thoughts and comments are welcomed.