Former Green Beret expresses support for Venezuelan coup plotter ahead of sentencing in US

This image provided by the United States Department of Justice shows a poster announcing a reward for information leading to the arrest of Cliver Alcala Cordones, posted on March 26, 2020, as part of the federal case against him.

An American veteran who Plotted to overthrow the President of Venezuela He proudly expressed his support for the former Venezuelan military general who pleaded guilty to terrorism charges in New York, noting that his comrade in arms was a patriot and devoted family man who deserved a lesser prison sentence.

By Joshua Goodman / Associated Press

Former Green Beret Jordan Gaudreau has remained silent as a group of Venezuelan military defectors he helped secretly train in Colombia launched a cross-border attack in 2020 with the goal of toppling President Nicolas Maduro. Dubbed Operation Gideon, the raid did not stand a chance and two of Gaudreau’s fellow Green Beret veterans were quickly arrested, while eight Venezuelans were killed.

Gaudreau, 47, reappeared this week alongside Cliver Alcala, the rebel Venezuelan soldier who will be his most trusted aide in the crazy plan. A retired Venezuelan army general will be sentenced on January 18 on two counts of supporting a Colombian rebel army designated as a terrorist group by the United States. He can be jailed for up to 30 years.

In a letter filed Monday in Manhattan federal court, Gaudreau described how he had come to admire his colleague, who lives with Alcala and his family in an austere apartment in northern Columbia. Although he does not mention their covert coup plot, he describes how the two raised funds to buy rice and other basic foodstuffs for the needy, and attributes Alcala’s sense of service to the example set by his grandmother, who raised him after the loss of his parents. was raised , and his two decades as a soldier in some of the most remote corners of Venezuela.

“Most soldiers feel a need to serve, and I know Cliver always wanted to help those in need,” Gaudreau wrote in a one-page letter to Judge Alvin Hellerstein, pleading for a reduced sentence. “He devoted himself to giving to others whatever excess he had.”

Gaudreau’s public appeal stemmed from his involvement in a bizarre plot published in a 2020 Associated Press investigation that revealed a jungle camp under Julius Caesar de Guerre named Alcala. A few dozen Venezuelan military deserters were trained, desperate to overthrow Maduro. .

The AP has found no evidence of direct US government involvement, despite Godreau’s constant knocking on the door of Donald Trump’s White House and making deals with Maduro’s opponents to gain support for what has become known as the Bay of Piglets. But Fidel Castro’s invasion of Cuba in 1961 was equally unsuccessful.

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