Alex Saab’s Diplomatic Immunity Ruling Freezes his Court Case In Florida

The Orinoco Tribune, December 7, 2021

The trial against the Venezuelan diplomat, Alex Saab, in the Court of the US Southern District of Florida, was suspended due to the ongoing appeal for his diplomatic status. The appeal was filed in April of 2021, reported FuserNews.

The current complaint in regards to the recognition of his diplomatic status, which would confer immunity for Ambassador Saab, has been fought in the Court of Appeals of the Eleventh Circuit of Atlanta, Georgia, since April 1, 2021 when the defense team requested that the court “annul the order conferring the status of fugitive.”

In response to this petition and the argument used by the US Department of Justice to refute the defense’s request, claiming that there should be no recognition of it by the US State Department, defense attorney David Rivkin pointed out that the US government “should not be regarded as a global record of all the world’s diplomats.”

He recalled that recognition of the status of Special Envoy corresponds to the sending state and the receiving State, in this case Venezuela and Iran respectively.

The information was released this Monday during a preliminary hearing before the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.

“If we agree to live in a world where a country can detain and criminally prosecute a diplomat from a foreign country, then we are allowing a process that has the ability to plunge us into chaos in an international environment that already has many problems,”

Rivkin warned in a November 5 interview with Telesur.

It was also reported that the prosecutors assigned to the case have  announced that they will request legal assistance from Panama, as well as Ecuador, Colombia, Malta and Cape Verde.

The appearance was scheduled for December 28. However, Judge Robert Scola approved the motion, presented by the defense of diplomat Alex Saab, to advance the hearing.

Featured image: Alex Saab poster. Photo: Últimas Noticias. 

Source: Últimas Noticias,  Translation: Orinoco Tribune

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