Venezuela Holding U.S. Ship And Crew For Alleged Arms Trafficking
So it looks like Venezuela’s idiot dictator Hugo Chavez has stepped up his game in his one-man war with the United States. Now he’s seized an American ship and is holding its crew on suspicion of weapons trafficking. From Forbes:
The Venezuelan government has seized a U.S. flagged ship and detained its captain for more than a week.
Since August 29 the ship Ocean Atlas has been at port in Maracaibo, Venezuela, where it docked to unload a cargo of equipment. Yet after four hours in port, the ship was boarded and searched by armed security personel, and the captain was detained on suspicion of trafficking in arms or drugs. The captain has been identified as Jeffrey Michael Raider, 45, of Texas.
The rest of the crew of 15 Americans has remained on board under guard. According to a well-placed source arrest warrants have been issued for all of the crewmembers, who are to be taken off the ship for questioning.
I don’t know if these charges have any basis in reality or if they’re just more evidence of Chavez’s paranoia that the U.S. is plotting against him. What I do know is he better watch himself with this one. Running off at the mouth is one thing, but when you start seizing ships and taking U.S. citizens into custody, you better be 100% correct in your accusations. If he isn’t? Things could get ugly in an awful big hurry.