They Brought Out the A-Team to Pluck a Couple of Flowers

Preet Bharara is not quite a household name. But to those in the know he's a legend: he's the guy who caught the closest thing real life has to Kaiser Soze.


One tidbit stood out at me about the Flores Brothers’ arrest: the US Prosecutor leading the investigation against them is Preet Bharara.

That name may not mean much to you, but Bharara is as badass as prosecutors come. He’s the guy who set up the sting against Viktor Bout – the near-mythical, Kaiser Soze-style Russian arms dealer who’d been assumed to be un-catchable for the previous three decades.

60 Minutes (above) did a pretty amazing show on what the lengths the gringos had to go to in order to catch Bout. Let’s just say that an investigative team able to do that can’t have broken much of a sweat busting Cilia’s idiot nephews.

These two florecitas are just leverage, guys. The plea bargain negotiations must be intense right now. If these guys tell Bharara 100% of what they know, they have some chance of seeing the sun again before they’re AARP-aged. If they tell him 99.9% of what they know, they don’t.


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  1. Has Chavismo launched any hashtag campaign on twitter to free these guys already?

    Some suggestions:

    #BringBackOurBoys #CocaineisNotaThreatbutHope #TheyWereDoingAsocialExperiment #TheywereSendingHarinaPantothePoor #McDonaldsandBeerdoMoreHarmthanCocaine

  2. I doubt there are negotiations happening yet. The U.S. rules about special consideration for sentencing reductions are complex, and have to be approached carefully. A lawyer would need to debrief these guys for two weeks, even to get a sense of what they might offer to reduce their sentence. And that’s if they tell the lawyer to not worry about the admissibility of the tapes, whether the Bil of Rights protections apply in Haiti, etc.

    I’m guessing not too much will happen for several months. And we won’t see the videos for a while, because releasing them might contaminate the jury pool. Or so someone might argue.

  3. Update 8:30 EST: FAV0001 Cubana is overflying the Swiss alps inbound to Geneva. ETA 1 hour.

    Regarding the bust, the reports from ABC Spain are embellished by Emili. Nobody knows what those two boys said on the plane if they said anything at all.

    When the indictments are unsealed, we will know the truth and it’s going to be bad. Real bad for the regime.

  4. little known story about Victor Bout and Miraflores: when they set Victor up for the Indonesia meet, Victor called Miraflores to check out these “FARC” guys he was dealing with. Guess what they told him from Miraflores? …”It’s ok Victor, those guys are with us.” With this assurance, Victor traveled to Indonesia and his fateful meeting with undercover FBI. Thank you Miraflores.

  5. First productive investigation by Sr. Preet we have seen here after several ridiculous and unproductive Wall Street witch hunts. The article about police assassinations really begs the question of whether things in VZ are just too far gone to ever return to any sense of normal. How does VZ even with the most drastic changes in leadership imaginable ever manage to reinstate any sense of law and order?

    PS The upper echelon of Haitian political world is too busy trying to figure out how to maneuver the next/final election round, and too fractured to have played any role here, good DEA timing given uptick in Haiti streets filled with burning tires last ten days but smart DEA got everyone on a plane and out before there could be any fuss. Haiti is totally dependent on VZ for oil but it is hard to figure out who is steering the bus in Haiti on a day to day basis.

  6. Greetings people of Venezuela and readers of Caracas Chronicles.

    As a multi-fuctional member of several departments of the EE.UU i am please to inform all the Venezuelans that the charges of drug trafficking against the Flores where dropped, it was all a big mistake and this young successfuls Venezuelans entrepreneurs carried 800kg of sugar not cocaine, whos destiny was to be dropped in Venezuela to help the country in the battle against the economic war that some of my colleagues and others got against your country.

    In the name of the D.E.A and the rest of the goberment entities in the land of the free, i offer a sincere apologie.

    Jim Luers

    • Thank you, White House Spokesman/ FBI Agent/ Analyist for Dialogo International, James Luers.

      As a media source, your reliability has been an impeccable clarifying contribution. We hope to hear from you again soon and wish you the best of luck in your next venture.

  7. This Preet dude’s awesome. I remember a quote from him in an interview with Charlie Rose: “don’t worry about being great, just focus on being good… Great will come”

  8. Any one remember what happened to “Manuel Noriega” …….. maybe their very bad day will become much worse in the near future.

    • That is NOT going to happen. Those were completely different circumstances. Venezuelans need to accept that the cavalry is not coming, and that they need to save themselves.

    Thursday November 12, 2015 05:02 PM
    Opposition coalition Unified Democratic Panel (MUD) asked the National Assembly on Thursday to designate a committee to look into the detention in Haiti of a godson and a nephew of Venezuelan First Lady, Cilia Flores, on charges of cocaine trafficking into the United States.

    “The Venezuelan parliament needs to designate a committee that goes to the US to investigate what has happened, and even, if needed, to find out the needs those nationals have,” Jesús Torrealba, Executive Secretary of the MUD told the press.

    “The use of diplomatic passports need to be investigated, as well as who is the owner of that aircraft,” Torrealba added. He stressed that the MUD would not judge the two Venezuelans arrested and that the organization believed in the “presumption of innocence,” Efe reported.

    Efraín Antonio Campos Flores and Francisco Flores de Freitas will appear before a judge in a federal court in Manhattan on Thursday afternoon at an unspecified time on charges of drug trafficking, the New York Attorney Office reported.

    So far, no Venezuelan government spokesperson has made comments on this detention.


    I stand corrected. El National spilled the beans, and MUD has, amazingly, taken the high ground.

    • the organization believed in the “presumption of innocence,”

      A semantic-type puzzle, here.

      Does this mean that the MUD believes in the common law indictment of the US, which always operates on the basis of presumption of innocence? For unless things have changed in the coding of civil law (which believes in the presumption of guilt), in more recent years, it makes no sense for an Venezuelan organization to believe in the precepts of a law (common) that is foreign to its own territory.

  10. Maybe Diosdado was the one who ratted them out. This way he scores against the Flores moving in on his territory and hits Maduro hard. Anything is possible with these guys.

    • I am half-starting to believe that. That somebody set up Dumb and Dumber up, to twist the short and hairy of Nico and Cilia. Else, how could somebody be so incredibly stupid?

  11. Link to the Indictment is here:

    There are some inconsistencies with what has been reported, and what the Indictment says. The most glaring of which that the Indictment for conspiracy says that the defendants intended to smuggle 5 (five) kilograms of cocaine into the U.S. That is considerable different then the 800kg reported by the press. Where did the press get the 800kg number they reported?

    Of the questions still to be answered, some are:

    1. Was the cocaine actually on the plane with the two defendants?

    2. Where did the allegations in the ABC (Spain) piece come from regarding DC and TelA’s involvement come from? At that time, all of the press reports were based upon anonymous sources.

    3. Press reports indicated that the plan was for the drugs to go to Honduras. Why were they in Haiti?

    As fun as it is to speculate, that actually benefits the regime, because if the truth is significantly less egregious than the speculations, it make it look like a smear-job against the regime.

    • You misunderstand the indictment. It does not refer to the amount of cocaine involved in the conspiracy. It refers only to the sentencing category, “five kilos and more”. Indictments don’t include the amount, because then that fact has to be proven with exactitude.

      With this indictment, they have made clear that they must prove at least 5 kg, but perhaps much more. They have also made clear that it is an offence which potentially attracts a sentence of life imprisonment.

  12. The ambitious Bharara has recently suffered some high profile setbacks – getting insider trading convictions against some of Wall Street’s Finest is apparently more difficult than he’d expected it to be. With both his stats and his headlines slipping he needs to score some impressive-sounding victories, and if his staff can get these characters to cough up enough incriminating information about a Big Fish or two, he may eventually get some.

  13. República Dominicana.- Fue allanada la madrugada de este viernes la casa de Francisco Flores de Freites, sobrino de la primera dama de Venezuela, Cilia Flores.

    En la propiedad, ubicada en Casa de Campo, La Romana, se encontraron 80 kilogramos de clorhidrato de cocaína (al 99%). También fue decomisado un yate “The Kingdom” registrado en Bahamas (Y0016), propiedad de Francisco Flores Suarez.

    Dentro del Yate, de 135 pies con pista de aterrizaje para helicópteros, estaban 53 kilogramos de clorhidrato de cocaína y 10 kilogramos de heroína de alta pureza.

    El capitán es venezolano y está siendo protegido por autoridades de la Administración para el Control de Drogas (DEA), está colaborando y es ahora testigo protegido.

    La casa de Flores, es vecina a la casa del fallecido modisto dominicano Oscar de La Renta.

    Las informaciones fueron suministradas por una fuente de entero crédito a NCDN.

    Ya se informó de que están por salir las citaciones y órdenes de arresto para personas involucradas en el hecho, en Miami, Florida.

    La información que se maneja que el fiscal de New York, donde están los detenidos los sobrinos, quiere la cabeza de Tarek el Salami (militante del Partido Socialista Unido de Venezuela y radicalmente CHAVISTA.) junto a la de los hermanos Cabello.

    También se les decomiso una jeepeta Ford Explorer un carro Toyota Yaris, color Azul, así como 43 mil 450 pesos y 500 dólares a uno y al otro 64, 000 pesos en efectivo.

  14. I can’t believe it. And probably, also Bharara and the DEA couldn’t believe their ears, when they were informed that Cilia’s nephews were going to Haiti to *personally* deliver drugs! They must have thought “it’s so easy that’s scary!” and elatedly: “how can they be so dumb!”

    I mean, the DEA and the U.S. government is not in love for the RRrrrevolution, and besides, they are trafficking drugs into the U.S. They might not be ready or daring enough to arrest Diosdado or one of the Three Suns generals, but instead, this pair of DUMBOS were the perfect target. Close to the big shots, not public or elected officials, and it turns out, terminally dumb, to sell cocaine *personally*, being so obvious. It was obvious, that anyone with career ambitions in the DEA and Justice would have jumped at this opportunity instantly!

    I am wondering also, how can Maduro, for that matter people around him be so f***ing retarded? Allow family members to dirty their hands and risk being caught like any dumb pawn? What, has the Narcorevolution run out of ordinary , relatively unknown minions to do their dirty work? No, if anything, they must have had plenty of those to choose from and send to Haiti!

    Were I Maduro, I would have expressly forbidden anyone close to me to run such risks, on penalty of a good workout with a rubber hose or worse… As for Diosdado, I can’t just picture a smart criminal mastermind such as him allowing something like this, unless he was the one who set up Dumb and Dumber to be caught, but it’s unlikely, since this splashes him, badly.

    • Can you imagine what Castro — if he were not terminally senile — would think about this? After all, the Cuban father of the revolution was always, and for so long, very careful about camouflaging his wealth, being more or less successful at imparting these habits to his progeny (and apparatchiks), so that he (and they) would always appear authentic to his word.

      Maduro (and Cilia) looks like a total imbecile of the revolution.

      • That was because Castro is far more serious than this bunch ever was. If anyone DOES take the Rrrevolution seriously after seeing how they flash their wealth and power, they are brain damaged.

        But this is even below tinpot-dictator’s-family-and-cronies-flashing-their-wealth stupid.

        This is against basic self-preservation level of imbecility.

        If the two brainless wonders who went to Haiti to put themselves within range of the DEA couldn’t figure out that… they shouldn’t! at least I expected that Diosdado or any of his associates could, in order to prevent them from ever doing it. Ah, quoting some fantasy literature: “Oft evil will shall evil mar.

  15. Just the fact that they owned a house in that most exclusive Dominican neighborhood of La Romana and a 170 foot Yatch , two young guys with no known professions or businesses stinks to high heaven!! How do two guys like that get so rich so quickly !! Of course the discovery of a large stach of drugs in the home and yatch goes a long way towards explaining it , that plus being able to leave Maiquetia with a bag of drugs in a private airplane without the GN airport searchers discovering. These facts suggests that these men thrive in an environment where a priviledged set of officially protected criminals , by bandying out their family connections get a blank cheque to whatever criminal activities they want to engage in. .

    Are we to think that these close family members of the Maduro extended family managed to ccummulate all that without Maduro and Cilia knowing anything about it ……..its preposterous !!


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