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News: Law and Justice

Six Suspects in Murder of Venezuelan Student Leader Detained

Mérida, October 17, 2008 ( Venezuelan authorities detained six suspects in the case of the October 1st murder of Julio Soto, the student government president at the University of Zulia, according to Venezuelan Attorney General Luisa Ortega Díaz.

“I want to indicate that we will continue this fight against impunity and to give answers to the community,” said Ortega.

Three of the suspects work for the intelligence division of the Venezuelan army, and one of them was recently suspended for disciplinary purposes from the national Criminal, Scientific, and Penal Investigations Corps (CICPC).

According to the minister of the interior and justice, Tarek El-Aissami, investigators have identified two other suspects in the case, and have obtained at least one of the handguns used in the murder.

The suspects are now held in a jail in Maracaibo, the city where the murder occurred, and they will be tried in a court in the state of Zulia.

Earlier this month, investigators discovered evidence that Soto’s murder was linked to Soto’s illicit selling of government-subsidized student bus tickets.

Soto was a member of the opposition political party COPEI, and was also was in contact with the new opposition political party Un Nuevo Tiempo, which was founded by Zulia Governor Manuel Rosales.

Published on Oct 17th 2008 at 5.11pm