Baduel’s wife told Globovisión that both she and her husband had guns pointed at their heads by people who identified themselves as DIM agents, "but without saying where they were taking us," a situation she called "violent and irregular."
Her husband "had been presenting himself regularly every two weeks" at the military court handling his case, Mrs. Baduel said.
It has become increasingly common for leaders who fall into disfavor with el Presidente to be arrested for "corruption;" those still in favor rarely suffer similar fates. It is very unlikely that this disparity has anything to do with their relative corruptness.
El Presidente has also rendered recently elected opposition Government officials impotent by superimposing new levels of Government over them, to ensure that all political power remains in his hands. This has been relatively easy, since the national legislature is completely under his control. In addition, he has made a point of suppressing public protests in communities where the opposition is favored. Very few pro-Chávez demonstrations have been suppressed.
El Presidente, as part of his plan to silence all opposition voices, recently brought "corruption" charges against the newly elected (opposition party) Mayor of Maracaibo in oil rich Zulia province (and a 2006 candidate for the Presidency), who thereafter hid to avoid arrest and obtained political asylum in Peru. In response, Venezuela recalled its ambassador to Peru.
El Presidente Chávez recently had Ortega Díaz, the president of Globovisión arrested on criminal charges, and is in the process of terminating Globovisión itself; El Presidente had refused two years previously to renew the broadcasting license of Radio Caracas Televisión, which had been broadcasting for thirty-five years but had become an often critical voice. Since el Presidente refused to renew the broadcast license of Radio Caracas Television in 2007, Globovisión has been the only anti-government network on public airwaves in Venezuela. The demise of Globovisión now seems to be imminent. In getting Sr. Díaz charged,
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez specifically ordered . . . the Supreme Justice Tribunal to "comply with their duty" and called on officialdom to be "agile" in acting against media organizations that were "poisoning" the population. That was what they were there for, Chavez said, and if not "they should resign so that somebody with courage takes over."