International

Court allows Cape Verde to expel Venezuela’s Maduro ally

A court in Cape Verde has ruled that a Colombian businessman, who was a special envoy of the Venezuelan government, can be extradited to the United States.

Alex Saab is facing money laundering charges for allegedly helping the government of President Nicolas Maduro transfer around $350m (£257m) out of Venezuela.

He denies the charges.

The suspect is alleged to have designed schemes to provide the government of President Maduro with much-needed illicit cash flows in the face of US sanctions.

The US Justice Department charged him two years ago with running a global multi-million dollar money laundering operation that diverted Venezuelan state funds to overseas accounts.

He is also charged with siphoning money from a government food aid scheme.

Although Mr Saab’s legal team have said they will appeal against the extradition, there are reports a US Justice Ministry plane may already be on its way.