Connect to share and comment

American "spy" arrested in Venezuela

A filmmaker from California has been arrested by Venezuelan police on accusations that he caused post-election violence.

Henrique capriles venezuela 2013 03 25Enlarge
Venezuelan presidential candidate, Henrique Capriles, gestures during a campaign rally in Naguanagua, Carabobo state, Venezuela, on March 21, 2013. (Leo Ramirez/AFP/Getty Images)

Remember all that intense  post-election violence in Venezuela? It's partly some guy from California's fault. That seems to be what Venezuelan authorities are suggesting with their arrest of a California filmmaker.

Relatives of Timothy Hallet Tracy, a United States citizen,  says he was traveling to Venezuela to shoot a documentary. But Venezuela's Interior Minister Miguel Rodriguez Torres says that Tracy was a spy who directed funds towards student protests. In a news conference, the official says that Tracy tried to start a "civil war" in Venezuela.

"Judging from the way this gentleman behaved, we presume that he belongs to some intelligence organization, because he is trained and he knows how to infiltrate, and how to handle sources and security information," Interior Minister Miguel Rodriguez Torres  told Agence France Presse and other news agencies in a press conference.

 More from GlobalPost:  Venezuela post-election violence takes lives

Tracy sought "to bring the country to civil war... which would immediately provoke the intervention of a foreign power to restore order and reestablish democracy," Rodriguez added, in an apparent reference to the United States.

Meanwhile, Tracy's family paints a very different picture. His friends say he came to Venezuela last year to impress a girl,  the Associated Press reported. At a party, a friend said, "he met this cute girl who says, 'If you really are a documentary filmmaker you'll come tell the story of what is happening in Venezuela.'"

Before his latest project, he had been a story consultant on the 2009 documentary "American Harmony," about competitive barbershop quartet singing, and produced the recent Discovery Channel program "Under Siege," the AP reported.   "They don't have CIA in custody. They don't have a journalist in custody. They have a kid with a camera," a friend added in an interview with the AP. 

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/venezuela/130425/american-spy-arrested-venezuela

SamH More than 1 year ago
Help the Georgetown grad student. The regime wanted all his news footage and interviews with students and protesters. They are trying to put a guy making a documentary of what is really happening in prison for life, in Venezuela, life in prison is worse than a death penalty. Please help save Tim. https://www.change.org/petitions/embajada-de-estados-unidos-en-venezuela-u-s-embassy-in-venezuela-liberen-al-cineasta-timothy-tracy-free-filmmaker-timothy-tracy