ⓘ Cliver Alcala Cordones

Cliver Alcala Cordones

ⓘ Cliver Alcala Cordones

Cliver Antonio Alcala Cordones, is a retired Venezuelan major general and a member of the Bolivarian Army. Cliver Alcala was one of the soldiers who participated in the attempted coup detat against President Carlos Andres Perez in February 1992, and served as chief of garrison in the cities of both Valencia and Maracay, and finally as general commander of the Integral Defense Region in Guayana. Alcala Cordones was discharged from the Army on 5 July 2013 during the tenure of Nicolas Maduro.

In 2011, Alcala was accused by the United States government of being a drug trafficker and a member of the Cartel of the Suns. Alcala moved from Venezuela to Barranquilla, Colombia in 2018 and emerged as a forceful opponent of Maduro, described as the "ringleader" of the Venezuelan military deserters.

In March 2020, Alcala turned himself in to US authorities in Barranquilla, Colombia after the US Department of State offered a US$10 million reward for his capture.


1. Military career

Alcala Cordones is an officer graduated from the Bolivarian Military University of Venezuela. Cordones collaborated with Hugo Chavez during the attempted coup in February 1992 and in 2002, months after the attempted coup against Chavez, he led the intervention of the Caracas Metropolitan Police, then under the command of Mayor Alfredo Peña.

In 2008, Cordones served as head of the Valencia garrison, in the Carabobo state, later he led the Maracay garrison, in Aragua state, and in 2013 he served as general commander of the Guayana Comprehensive Defense Region REDI-Guayana.

Caracol Radio reported that investigators and their collaborators that at one point in time; Alcala had more power than Diosdado Cabello and Nicolas Maduro. This was the result of the conjunction of his narco trafficking segment with the Guajira cartel. A conjunction that was sealed by the marriage between Alcala and Marta Gonzalez, a niece of Hermagoras Gonzalez, leader of the La Guajira cartel. Maduro and Diosdado eradicated Alcala as he was becoming a threat to their power and dominance of the cartel as a whole.


2. Investigations

In September 2011, four Hugo Chavez allies inclduing Alcala Cordones were sanctioned by the United States Department of the Treasury for allegedly helping FARC obtain weapons and smuggle drugs. It accuses him of using his position to establish an arms-for-drugs route with the FARC.

On 18 April 2012, Alcala Cordones was singled out for being involved in drug trafficking in Venezuela by former magistrate Eladio Aponte Aponte, exiled in Panama, who confessed to having been pressured by Hugo Chavez to condemn Ivan Simonovis and having had a friendly relationship with Walid Makled.

In 2018, the confessed drug trafficker Walid Makled published a video on social networks from an alleged SEBIN prison where he threatened Cliver Alcala, "I told you that I am going to be your shadow, I am going for you." Cliver Alcala collaborated with the investigation and arrest of Walid Makled.

According to the Associated Press, since 2019 Cliver Alcala dedicated himself to coordinating a military plan to overthrow Maduro with the help of American advisers and the support of Silvercorp USA company. Lester Toledo, member of Popular Will, introduced the US military Jordan Goudreau to Alcala. A group of 300 Venezuelan soldiers was training in the Colombian border. The plans were frustrated after the Colombian police seized an arsenal of weapons of war and then the extradition of Alcala was requested by the Venezuelan government and by the United States government.


3. Exile and extradition to the US

Cliver Alcala began to reside in Barranquilla, Colombia from 2018 until his decision to surrender to US authorities in March 2020.

On 26 March 2020, Alcala assumed responsibility for "a military operation against the Maduro dictatorship", including a shipment of weapons captured in Colombia, stating that the United States, Colombia and Juan Guaido officials had signed an agreement to support their efforts to overthrow President Maduro. Guaido denied knowledge of the event while United States Special Representative to Venezuela Elliott Abrams described Alcalas statement as "despicable and quite dangerous".


3.1. Exile and extradition to the US Arrest

On 27 March 2020, Cliver Alcala turned himself in before the Colombian National Intelligence Directorate, after the United States Department of Justice included him in a list of solicitors the previous day, offering ten million dollars for his capture and by that of four other senior Venezuelan officials wanted for drug trafficking, including ongoing president Nicolas Maduro. Cliver subsequently turned himself in to the Drug Enforcement Administration DEA after agreeing to collaborate with prosecutors, being extradited to the United States.

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