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Eligio Cedeno

Eligio Cedeno is a Venezuelan banker, president of CEDEL Group, Venezuela. He is in the United States, having been released on bail from charges in Venezuela of circumventing government currency rules to gain U.S. dollars.


Cedeno was born in Caracas, Venezuela, on December 1, 1964. He attended the University Simon Rodriguez in Caracas, Venezuela and earned a degree in Business Administration. Cedeno began work at an early age as a bank apprentice and was president of Bolivar-BanPro Financial Group in Venezuela, S.A. He had previously been President of Banco Canarias de Venezuela (20012005).

Arrest and release

In 2007 Cedeno, then President of Bolivar-Banpro Financial Group, was arrested in a crackdown by Venezuelan officials on individuals circumventing government currency rules to gain U.S. dollars. On February 8, 2007, Cedeno was accused by the Venezuelan Attorney General of aiding Consorcio MicroStar with illegal dollar transactions. Over the next year prosecutors repeatedly failed to turn up for court dates, leading to accusations that the case was being strung out due to a lack of evidence. Partly as a result, the United Nations' Working Group on Arbitrary Detention in September 2009 declared Cedeno's detention arbitrary.The Guardian, 17 December 2009, UN human rights panel accuses Chavez of undermining Venezuelan judges

Cedeno lawyers claim that he became a target of the Chavez government, as a consequence of his support for political opponents of Chavez. In addition to providing financial support to politicians, he provided assistance to union leader Carlos Ortega and columnist Patricia Poleo, both of whom would later be forced to flee Venezuela and seek political asylum. Further, still according to Cedeno' lawyers, the criminal charges against Cedeno appear to have been part of an orchestrated effort to force him to sell bank assets to individuals close to Chavez at an enormous discount.. Going further, Cedeno lawyers argue that this case "identifies the typical pattern employed by the pliant judiciary to attack Chavezs political opponents".

Held in jail pending trial for 34 months, Cedeno was paroled on 10 December 2009 by judge Maria Lourdes Afiuni. By the 19th Cedeno had fled to the United States, where he was detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement until the 23rd of December 2009 when he was released on parole pending an immigration hearing.. Due to her decision to liberate Cedeno, judge Maria Lourdes Afiuni was herself jailed.

External links

Eligio Cedeno Online The web site of Eligio Cedeno

Bolivarian Rule of Lawlessness, a report by the law firm that defends Eligio Cedeno

Cedeno first statement in freedom

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Eligio Cedeno

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