UK judge in Venezuelan gold case will do ‘everything possible’ to rule soon

The trial for control of Venezuelan gold deposited in the Bank of England concluded on Monday after the fourth day of hearings, while Judge Sarah Cockrell promised she would do “everything possible” to rule soon over who will manage the millionaires’ reserves.

Monday was the last day of the trial, with the parties’ lawyers’ final arguments facing each other over gold: the Venezuelan Central Bank’s directives regarding socialist President Nicolas Maduro and those of the financial entity. Dedicated Opposition leader Juan Guaido, who is recognized by the political authority of the United Kingdom and 50 other governments in the world, appointed him as the country’s president.

Richard Lesack, a lawyer for the BCV board of directors for the system, headed by Calixto Ortega, argued in his letter that “the Guaidó board is not a functional board of the Central Bank of Venezuela,” stressing that its members are in exile and are not part of the actions or decisions, according to France Press agency.

Andrew Fulton, Representative of the Board of Directors Dedicated From the central bank that Guaido appointed and loaned to the Venezuelan parliament in 2015, he insisted the Supreme Court of Justice was biased in Maduro’s favour.

He explained that its rulers favor Chavismo with their judgments or are under pressure to do so. His arguments attempted to convince the judge that the issue was about the legitimacy of the Venezuelan judicial system, and thus Maduro’s legitimacy as ruler.

Fulton urged Judge Cockrell to resolve the case soon so that Venezuelan gold would not remain in limbo for too long. This row over control of the crude seized in England dates back to 2020.

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He learned that regardless of the judge’s decision in the case, the losing party could still appeal the ruling. Last December, England’s High Court ruled in favor of the central bank’s governing body relating to Guaido, in the opinion that the British Foreign Office recognized him as the legitimate ruler.

The case in the English Commercial Court attempts to clarify whether the rulings of the Venezuelan judiciary, close to Maduro, that invalidated Guaido’s appointments to the board of directors of the alternative central bank, are correct.

The Venezuelan opposition and dozens of governments around the world dismissed Maduro as the legitimate president in 2019, claiming that the elections in which he was re-elected in 2018 were fraudulent and unconstitutional.

“honest” operation

Guaido insisted at the end of the trial in the UK Commercial Court that the Maduro government “carries more about power and money than the people of Venezuela,” according to a statement from his office.

The opposition leader said he was pleased with the opportunity to present his arguments to the English court regarding Venezuelan gold. “Unfortunately, this kind of fair and transparent judicial process does not exist in Venezuela,” Guaido commented, according to a press release.

“We are grateful that the UK reminds us and the world of what can be achieved in a democracy that respects the rule of law,” he added, shortly before praising “transparency in action” and the continued publication of council members’ accounts. The central bank designated by your office.

Lissac, the lawyer for his Venezuelan counterpart, stressed, on the last day of the trial, that the file was “not a trial for the Maduro regime”, but an assessment of the recognition or non-recognition of the decisions of the Venezuelan judiciary.

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