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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Robert Serra
Born(1987-01-16)16 January 1987
Maracaibo, Venezuela
Died1 October 2014(2014-10-01) (aged 27)
Caracas, Venezuela
NationalityVenezuelan
OccupationCriminologist and politician
Political partyPSUV

Robert Serra (16 January 1987 – 1 October 2014) was a Venezuelan politician from Maracaibo and a member of the Venezuelan National Assembly for the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV).[1]

Early life

According to political analyst Helly Angel, Serra had a "very aggressive temperament" and stated that he "was very controversial, very problematic, even within their own family unit, with many conflicts and confrontations, even among his own family". He also described Serra as a "admirer of Fidel Castro, a supporter of the Cuban revolution". Serra attended Andrés Bello Catholic University where he had few friends and failed to establish a Chavista group at the university where most students had middle-class conservative roots.[2] A former classmate stated that Serra was "Even by chavista standards, Robert was always very militant" and that he was a provocateur among students, describing an occasion after Serra made controversial statements at school that fellow students began pelting him with objects which followed with his transportation to and from campus by armed members of the Caracas Metropolitan Police. In 2010, Serra became the youngest politician ever elected to Venezuela's national legislature at the age of 23.[3]

Death

Serra and his companion María Herrera were stabbed at his home in Caracas on 1 October 2014.[4][5][6] The circumstances surrounding Serra's death have been debated among the Venezuelan government and others.

Venezuelan government

Following the discovery of Serra's body, the Venezuelan government quickly accused opposition parties and hired killers of his death.[7] Though President Nicolas Maduro stated that he would present official reports of Serra's death "within hours," he never presented such evidence within the timeframe.[7] On 3 October, a ceremony of burial was held at the Cementerio General del Sur in Caracas where President Maduro accused foreign masterminds of Serra's murder, with those accused including former Colombian president Alvaro Uribe and "criminals" supposedly supported by the United States government.[8] Uribe denied all of President Maduro's allegations.[9] President Maduro also accused "ultra-right" groups in Venezuela and Colombia of Serra's death and presented a blurry video of a man who supposedly confessed to the murder stating that "the Colombia" told him to "get rid" of Serra.[10] However, according to The Economist, the government, trailing badly in opinion polls with a crucial parliamentary election coming up in 2015, may have felt the need to rally the troops by playing up the ruthless nature of “the enemy”.[7] As of 17 October, President Maduro stated that $500,000 was paid to multiple suspects with 75% of it supposedly reserved for "the Colombia" and that seven people were arrested who were allegedly involved in Serra's murder.[11] On 1 November in a Runrunes interview, Serra's father who had lived with Serra for 3 months stated that one of the Venezuelan government's suspects, Edwin Torres, a colectivo member[12] who was called Serra's "head bodyguard", was unfamiliar to him.[13]

Others

Contrasting the Venezuelan government's statements, some have called Serra's murder an alleged inside job.[3] Members of the Venezuelan opposition were skeptical of the government's blurry video.[14] Criminologists found it difficult to believe that Serra's murder was a "political hit".[7] According to insiders of the situation, the murder seemed to be due to a robbery or betrayal.[7] Another connection made to Serra's death was his close connection to colectivos, in particular the leader of the leader of the 5 de Marzo and "close associate" of Serra, José Odreman.[7]

During a pause between a supposed gunfight in downtown Caracas, Odreman made statements hinting at the involvement between the clash and Serra's death, criticized law enforcement corruption and said to Minister Miguel Rodríguez Torres, “I lay full responsibility on you of what might happen to me. Enough comrades have been sacrificed”.[15][16][17] A little over an hour after his statements, photographs emerged showing the 5 de Marzo colectivo leader Odreman being held captive by Venezuelan authorities followed by videos which showed his dead body lying in a pool of blood.[15][16] Though the Venezuelan government denied that the clashes and resulting deaths of colectivo members were related to Serra's death,[15][16] Runrunes noted in an investigative article that the police and bodyguards arrested by Venezuelan authorities involved with Serra's death were also members of colectivos.[12]

The presumed murderer of Robert Serra, identified as a Colombian paramilitary, is captured by Colombian police in November 2014 and extradited to Venezuela.[18] In June 2015, Julio Cesar Velez, former députy in Colombian city of Cúcuta and member of Social Party of National Unity (right-wing) is arrested in Venezuela and suspected of instigating of murder. The man is also suspected by the Colombian justice for the murder of his wife several years earlier.[19]

See also

References

  1. ^ Noticia al Dia: ¿Quién era Robert Serra? (in Spanish)
  2. ^ "Robert Serra: Hombre fuerte de los colectivos chavistas". Venezuela Al Dia. 3 October 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2014.
  3. ^ a b Lansberg-Rodriguez, Daniel (8 October 2014). "In Caracas, Death Doesn't Discriminate According to Politics". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 9 October 2014.
  4. ^ "Chavista legislator Robert Serra murdered in Venezuela". DW.DE. Retrieved 3 October 2014.
  5. ^ "BBC News - Venezuelan lawmaker Robert Serra killed in Caracas". BBC News. Retrieved 2 October 2014.
  6. ^ "Venezuelan 'Chavista' lawmaker Serra stabbed, killed at home". Reuters. Retrieved 2 October 2014.
  7. ^ a b c d e f "A murder in Venezuela: Most foul". The Economist. 14 October 2014. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  8. ^ "http://www.el-nacional.com/sociedad/Cortejo-Robert-Serra-Cementerio-Sur_0_494350670.html". El Nacional. 3 October 2014. Archived from the original on 26 October 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2014. External link in |title= (help)
  9. ^ "Expresidente Uribe rechazó acusaciones de Maduro por muerte de Serra". El Universal. 4 October 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2014.
  10. ^ "Colombia gang 'behind Venezuela lawmaker Serra's murder'". BBC. 16 October 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2014.
  11. ^ "$500 mil en efectivo les pagaron a asesinos de Robert Serra". Globovision. 17 October 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2014.
  12. ^ a b Dávila Torres, Daniela; Sosa Calcaño, María (10 October 2014). "4 casos relacionan 9 homicidios". Runrunes. Retrieved 12 October 2014.
  13. ^ Rísquez, Ronna (1 November 2014). "Robert Serra: "No sabía que mi hijo tenía un jefe de escoltas"". Runrunes. Retrieved 4 November 2014.
  14. ^ Lee, Brianna (28 October 2014). "Venezuela's Maduro Promises A 'Police Revolution' After Lawmaker Robert Serra's Murder". International Business Times. Retrieved 28 October 2014.
  15. ^ a b c López, Virginia (8 October 2014). "Venezuela militia members killed by police amid political unrest". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 October 2014.
  16. ^ a b c Sanchez, Fabiola; Rueda, Jorge (8 October 2014). "5 Dead in Venezuela After Tense Police Standoff". ABC News. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  17. ^ "Difunden presunto video de José Odreman muerto en Quinta Crespo". Panorama. 8 October 2014. Archived from the original on October 15, 2014. Retrieved 10 October 2014.
  18. ^ http://www.telesurtv.net/news/La-historia-de-El-Colombia-el-asesino-de-Robert-Serra-20150530-0022.html
  19. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-09-14. Retrieved 2016-09-01.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
This page was last edited on 1 October 2019, at 08:55
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