Head of Venezuela Congress Sues News Executives for Defamation, Requests Travel Ban

The head of Venezuela's congress says he is asking courts to bar news executives from leaving the country while he's suing them for alleged defamation.
Those targeted include the head of El Nacional, the largest Venezuelan newspaper still consistently publishing articles critical of the government. National Assembly chief Diosdado Cabello said Wednesday he had followed through with his threat to sue the executives and their outlets for carrying reports in January from the Spanish newspaper ABC linking him to the drug trade. The reports said his bodyguard had defected to the U.S. to testify that Cabello heads a drug ring made up of politicians and high-level military officers. Cabello said he is pursuing both civil and criminal complaints, and is asking a court to take the executives' passports and freeze their assets. "None of them have even said sorry. And now I'm the bad guy, who they accused of being a drug trafficker without any proof?" he said. "Who is going to defend my human rights?"