Protesters arrested at Venezuelan Embassy face US charges

Combined Shape

WASHINGTON (AP) — Four demonstrators who had staged a weeks-long protest inside the Venezuelan Embassy were formally charged by U.S. authorities and appeared Friday in federal court in Washington.

A federal judge issued arrest warrants earlier this week for the four protesters — Kevin Bruce Zeese, 64, Margaret Ann Flowers, 57, Adrienne Pine, 49, and David Vernon Paul, 70 — and they were arrested Thursday at the embassy by federal agents.

They were charged with interfering with the protective functions of the State Department, according to prosecutors.

The protesters consider Nicolás Maduro to be the legitimate Venezuelan president. But the United States and more than 50 other countries say Maduro’s recent reelection was fraudulent and are backing congressional leader Juan Guaidó’s claim to the presidency.

Guaidó’s newly named ambassador had requested the help of U.S. authorities in clearing the building.

Trending:
Fred Weinberg: Getting Rid of Liz Cheney Is the Start to Taking Back Our Government

Authorities say agents with the Diplomatic Security Service used a loudspeaker earlier this week to inform the demonstrators that they were trespassing in the embassy and also posted trespassing notices on the doors. Prosecutors said the four refused to vacate the premises, leading to their arrests.

In charging papers, officials said the group’s “refusal to leave the Venezuelan Embassy interfered with the Department of State’s protective service of maintaining the security of the Venezuelan Embassy and the Permanent Mission of Venezuela to the Organization of American States.”

The protest started more than a month ago with at least 30 activists staying at the embassy, but their numbers gradually dwindled.

The building has been without power since last week and a crowd of Guaidó supporters had frequently gathered to heckle the protesters from the street.

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →






We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

Tags:
The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands.
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
Location
New York City




Conversation