Six American CITGO executives jailed in Venezuela face kangaroo court trial.

Tomeu Vadell — one of the 6 hostages — before jailing (L), and after (R)

Whoa. Here’s one significant news story that hasn’t received much attention, except for some local news outlets in the U.S. connected to the victims.

The case of these six Americans charged with “corruption” and jailed in Venenozuela should sound very familiar to anyone who follows news from Cuba.

Castro, Inc. has made the jailing of foreign businessmen an art form, especially under charges of “corruption,” which usually means that they were skimming some of the profits that Castro, Inc. thought should be theirs.

Such jailings send a clear message to all who partner up with Castro, Inc. And they also produce valuable bargaining chips, exchangeable for ransom of various sorts.

Let’s not forget pathetic Alan Gross, hostage extraordinaire, who served as the bargaining chip for the launching of Oh-Bama’s Normalization Circus.

Once again, the smell of Castro, Inc. permeates a story coming out of Venenozuela.

But the big question remains unanswered: why has this story stayed out of view?

Tomeu Vadell — one of the 6 hostages — with his family in happier times

From Daily Business Review:

Six American oil executives held in an overcrowded Venezuelan prison for 18 months finally got their day in court only to see their hopes of being released dashed.

During a preliminary hearing, Judge Rosvelin Gil accepted prosecutor Aramay Terán’s request that the six employees of Houston-based Citgo stand trial on corruption charges. No date for the trial to begin was set.

The decision Friday was a painful blow to the families of the men who were initially heartened by news their loved ones would have the chance to profess their innocence in court after the judge canceled 15 previous hearings giving little reason.

“After more than one and a half years of delayed due process, today’s preliminary hearing was a sad spectacle and a travesty of justice,” the family of Tomeu Vadell, Citgo’s vice president of refining, said in a statement.

“Venezuela is depriving an innocent man, a deeply loved husband and father of his freedom,” they added. “We will continue to demand his immediate and unconditional release.”

The families of the group dubbed the Citgo 6 — five of them, like Vadell, U.S. citizens and all with deep roots in Texas and Louisiana — complain the men are being held in inhumane conditions, sharing overcrowded basement cells in a military counterintelligence prison and losing weight in a country plagued by food shortages.

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