David Rivkin attorney for Alex Nain Saab Moran and member of the renowned law firm BakerHostetler, made known that he reiterated the request before the 11th Circuit of Miami; for the Venezuelan ambassador’s immunity to be recognized.
“The District Court’s demand that Mr. Saab waive the fundamental characteristics of immunity, in defiance of the nation he serves, manifests a lack of respect for Mr. Saab’s diplomatic status, the nation of Venezuela and its sovereignty, as well as established international norms,” Alex Saab’s lawyers wrote in an opening brief.
Alex Saab urged the Eleventh Circuit, this Tuesday, July 6, to reverse the District Court’s order; and dismiss the indictment in its entirety, arguing centuries of international law demonstrating his immunity from prosecution.
According to the report, the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry, appointed Alex Saab as a special envoy in April 2018. However, Saab was arrested during a stopover in Cape Verde while traveling to Iran; on a diplomatic mission for the purpose of obtaining aid for Venezuela during the onset of COVID-19 around the world.
David Rivkin attorney for Alex Saab
The Department of Justice has rejected Alex Saab’s immunity claims, pointing out that the U.S. State Department had not accredited him as a foreign ambassador .
In that regard, special envoy Alex Saab responded to that position as “troubling,” emphasizing that it was “dramatically at odds” with U.S. international and domestic legal obligations.
David Rivkin, a member of the BakerHostetler law firm and lead counsel in Alex Saab’s case; said the U.S. justification was absurd, during a call held Wednesday with Law360.
“In no case has the United States ever attempted to treat a foreign diplomat in this manner,” Rivkin said.
Likewise, he stresses that the “State Department does not and, in practice, cannot maintain a registry of all foreign diplomats around the world.”
In this regard, Rivkin points out that by “doing so would violate the sovereign dignity of other countries, if France wants to send someone to Berlin, you do not ask the State Department for an approval is, absurd.”
Similarly, Saab also asked the Eleventh Circuit to dissolve his fugitive status; arguing that because he was not in the United States when he was indicted, he did not flee.
Recall, a federal court in Miami has designated him a fugitive and ordered him to personally defend himself against criminal charges in the United States; and he is fighting extradition while under house arrest in Cape Verde.