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HC: 'Citgo Six' Out of Venezuela Prison But Their Futures Remain Uncertain Under House Arrest

The following excerpts are from an article by SERGIO CHAPA published in the Houston Chronicle December 10, 2019.

Dennysse Vadell sits between her daughters Veronica, right, and Cristina holding a digital photograph of father and husband Tomeu who is currently jailed in Venezuela, at their home in Katy, Texas, Friday, Feb. 15, 2019. Tomeu Vadell is one of six executives from Houston-based Citgo who has spent 15 months jailed in Venezuela on what their families say are trumped-up corruption charges. (AP Photo/John L Mone) Photo: John L Mone, STF / Associated Press

The six executives of Houston refining company Citgo released from a Venezuelan prison remain under house arrest in the troubled South American nation and the prospects of their return to the U.S. are murky.


Known as the Citgo Six, Alirio Zambrano, José Luis Zambrano, Tomeu Vadell, Jorge Toledo, Gustavo Cardenas and José Pereira will likely be able to see sunlight and breathe fresh air after enduring life-threatening weight loss and chronic infections during their two years confined in the basement of a military intelligence building in the Venezuela capital of Caracas.


In a statement released on Tuesday, the Vadell family confirmed that the Citgo vice president and the others were given house arrest in Venezuela but did not have any further information.


“We remain very concerned about Tomeu’s wellbeing, and hope that this is a step towards our loved one coming home very soon,” the family said.


Working as executives with Citgo in Texas and Louisiana, the six men were summoned to the refiner’s parent company, Petroleos de Venezuela SA, or PDVSA, on the Sunday before Thanksgiving 2017.

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