Robert Serra’s father spoke to the media today for the first time since his son’s murder one month ago. Robert Serra Sr. spoke to a journalist from Runrun.es, and explained how difficult life has been for him since his son and his partner were murdered on October 1. Serra Sr. said that his therapist has urged him to slowly “recover his life” by running errands again, and that his whole family has had very difficult time dealing with their loss.
Serra Sr. explained how he narrowly escaped death on October 1, since he lived in his son’s home and was supposed to be asleep in his room when a group of armed intruders broke into the home in Caracas and killed Robert Serra Jr. and Maria Herrera. For undisclosed reasons, Serra Sr. decided not to spend the night at home as he usually would have.
The stroke of luck has made Serra Sr. wonder about the apparent arbitrariness of it all:
If God is so great and made it so that I wouldn’t be there, why was my son there?
On the actual murder itself, Serra Sr. said that he was not aware that his son had a head bodyguard by the name of Edwin Torres. Torres has been blamed by the government for betraying Serra Jr. and taking part in the murder. Still, “Edwin’s name doesn’t ring many bells”, Serra Sr. said.
When asked if he believed – as the government assures – that his son’s murder was planned and executed by foreign paramilitary terrorists, Serra Sr. said:
I won’t answer that. I want things to clear up more first. I’m trying to heal from all the resentment and anger I feel. But this [murder] was planned.
Jaua Clarifies Gun Charges
Minister of Communes Elias Jaua issued a press release today clarifying the gun charges his children’s nanny faced in Brazil after a pistol was found in luggage belonging to him aboard a private PDVSA airplane. The full release can be found here, in Spanish.
Jaua explained that he was in Brazil on a working trip, and that his wife had come along. At the start of the trip, his wife became ill with an undisclosed illness, for which she sought treatment in a local hospital. Jaua cancelled the rest of the trip and asked his nanny in Caracas, Yanneth Anza, to bring him a suitcase full of documents he needed.
Jaua goes on to say that he explained to Anza that he had a pistol in the suitcase, and that she should make sure to unpack it before making the trip. Anza checked the suitcase, but found no pistol. According to Jaua, Anza then boarded the plane, convinced that Jaua was mistaken and that the pistol had never been in the suitcase to begin with. Upon arrival, Anza discovered that she had made a mistake, and that the pistol had indeed been in the suitcase all along.
The minister described Anza as “a hard working, intelligent, noble and honest” woman who was a victim of circumstance. He also took the opportunity to lash out at opposition critics who have spoken on the news since it broke, saying:
[Henrique] Capriles and his Court of Hatred can rest assured that their hatred does not impact the strength of my beautiful family – who, thank God, I’ve created with love, revolutionary consciousness and humanist ethic – by even one millimetre.
One Killed in Colombia Crash; Venezuelan Diplomatic Car Involved
Anibal Enrique Tapia Mesa appeared before a judge today in Bogota, Colombia. He is accused of causing a car accident in the city that killed one person and left ten other injured overnight Saturday. Mesa pleaded not guilty to charges of homicide and attempted homicide.
According to Bogota police, Tapia is married to a Venezuelan embassy official in the city. While Tapia is not a Venezuelan citizen, the car he was driving had Venezuelan diplomatic license plates. Bogota police also confirmed that Tapia was intoxicated at the time of the crash.
“Navidad Segura” Kicks Off
Operativo Navidad Segura, a holiday safety blitz, kicked off this weekend. Below, a video of some Lara state police officers – part of 6,000 in total – taking part in this year’s blitz: