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US-backed Venezuela ‘president’ Guaido could face 30 years in prison – judge

US-backed Venezuela ‘president’ Guaido could face 30 years in prison – judge
Opposition politician Juan Guaido, who declared himself president of Venezuela with US backing, may face up to 30 years in prison, a judge said. Meanwhile, US is threatening new sanctions against Caracas to compel regime change.

Guaido’s visit to Colombia on February 22 violated the travel ban imposed by Venezuela’s supreme court, deputy judge of the Supreme Tribunal for Justice Juan Carlos Valdez told Sputnik on Tuesday.

"He is a person hiding from justice. What happens with runaways who are re-entering the country and are found by the authorities? They must be caught and sent to prison,” Valdez said, adding, “He may face up to 30 years in jail.”

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State prosecutors are currently analyzing Guaido’s conduct for possible crimes, the judge added.

Guaido crossed into Colombia on Friday, ostensibly to lead a “human wave” of supporters across the border and force the military and border guards loyal to the government to allow in “humanitarian aid” provided by the US. He was nowhere to be seen, however, as his followers clashed with security forces. The aid was not allowed in.

The self-proclaimed president then went to Bogota, where he attended Monday’s meeting of the Lima Group of countries backing the US attempt to force Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro to resign.

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Speaking before a UN Security Council session on the situation in Venezuela, US special envoy Elliott Abrams announced that more sanctions on Caracas will be coming this week.

“We have said that sanctions will continue, we announced sanctions yesterday,” Abrams said. “There will be more, there will be more this week, there will be more next week. We'll continue to impose sanctions on high-ranking members of the regime and people who handle their financial affairs.”

Meanwhile, Guaido told the Colombian broadcaster NTN24 that he intends to return to Venezuela in spite of the risk of being arrested.

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