"Star Witness" in Poleo Case in Jail Again

Venezuelan opposition journalist Patricia Poleo has lived in Miami since she was accused of being the "intellectual author" of the murder of a prominent pro-Chavez prosecutor, Danilo Anderson. (New Times published a feature story about the case in February.)

Venezuela's Ministry of Justice implicated Poleo -- whose politics tend toward the extreme wing of Hugo Chavez detractors -- thanks to the testimony of one Giovanny V�squez. The government's sole witness, he claimed to have seen Poleo at planning meetings in a jungle hideout in Panama, and described her as a key player in Anderson's demise.

Vasquez was later revealed to be an experienced con artist with a criminal record who was in jail in Columbia at the time of the supposed jungle meeting. Poleo remains charged with the crime, however. Now, El Nuevo Herald informs us that Giovanny V�squez has been arrested for illegal weapons possession.

The state government official who nabbed him said there's no explaining "how a person who has been questioned for false testimony can walk around freely with a gun and a false license."

Vasquez was arrested in the state of Zulia, governed by ex-presidential candidate Manuel Rosales. A popular choice among Venezuelans living in Miami, he failed to uproot Chavez in December's presidential election.

The question of who really killed Danilo Anderson remains unsolved. --Emily Witt

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Frank Houston