The Fake Banesco Bank Branch in Tocuyito Prison Allegedly Really a Pizzeria


I’m not sure there’s a lot more I can say about this story. Just, y’know, we’re now being told the fake Banesco bank branch that was reportedly operating in Tocuyito Prison was really a pizzeria.

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It’s fun to try to pinpoint which part of this story makes the least sense.

Perhaps it’s this: Pizzesco reportedly had to close some time ago because even the Pran can’t source enough flour.

UPDATE (4:15 p.m.):
If this pizzeria story strikes you as totally ludicrous, you’re not alone.

Eight days ago, the reporter who originally ran with this story showed photos of a real Fake Bank agency operating in this same place.


There are videos, too:

It sure looks like it was hastily repurposed into an incoherent prison fake-bank-real-pizza-joint-with-no-flour, for the purpose of…hell, I give up.

Oh, Venezuela…never change!


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  1. I think that Andre Breton would be having the time of his life reading Caracas Chronicles ….this is true surrealism …..and from real life …………!! ………….Venezuela …where even the most absurd comes to life !!

  2. The outside world does not care about this stuff. Me parece q la audiencia principal esta en el.Imperio. Si quiero saber de los problemas y asuntos internos de Bananazuela, hay fuentes q sobran. A los gringos no les interesa derechos humanos y el hambre. Not our problem Not everyone in America has Reed College optics. There is a lot you do not cover.

  3. Until a couple of years ago there was a hand-made sign beside the Troncal 9 in Barlovento that read “Pizza y Mondongo”. Used to make us laugh every time we drove past. I never did try their mondongo pizza. But in a land where making pizza and mondongo on the same premises can be regarded as normal…. I don’t know, but serving pizza in a bank doesn’t seem so much of a stretch.

  4. Here is what I think/suspect:

    1. It was operating as a bank, even though it was not a branch of Banesco.
    2. It was set up in an ad hoc manner in a space which had been a pizzeria.
    3. Someone put up all the Banesco signs as a joke.
    4. Someone else fell for it (hook, line, and sinker).
    5. They were offering basic banking services, such as transfers, accounts, etc.
    6. It was a simple case of someone “finding a need and filling it”.
    7. The prison pran is probably a partner in the enterprise and has access to all its clients’ information.
    8. The bank is probably still operating from a more discreet local.
    9. There is probably a similar service in every other prison in Venezuela.


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