In another bizarre twist to the Maletagate trial in Miami, local newspaper Ultimas Noticias says today (by subscription) that the 18th. Circuit Court of Caracas has ordered the assets of Moises Maionica and Carlos Kauffmann frozen. In the case of Kauffmann, this includes his majority ownership in petrochemical company Venoco.
The order is quite weird as no reason has been given for it and no similar order has been given for the assets of either Guido Antonini or Franklin Duran, the two other main characters in the Miami trial.
Recall in particular, that the trio Duran, Kauffmann, Antonini worked together, but Maionica was part of the Government’s emissaries to get Antonini off the hook. They had no prior close relationship. Moreover, the Duran/Kaufmann duo was at the center of all dealings and Antonini was more their partner in deals involving the US, due to his US citizenship. Thus, pairing only Maionica and Kauffmann is quite strange, to say the least.
Recall that at some point Duran tells Antonini, in one taped conversation, that the Venezuelan Government may take everything away from them, including Venoco. Maybe Duran’s prize for not singing, is that he will be able to keep his assets.
Stay tuned, the show goes on!