Venezuela: 12 charged in detention of opposition leader

Juan Guaido, president of National Assembly, shows marks on his wrists, which he says are from handcuffs, to supporters at a rally in Caraballeda, Venezuela, Sunday, Jan. 13, 2019. The new head of Venezuela's increasingly defiant congress was pulled from his vehicle and briefly detained by police Sunday, a day after the U.S. backed him assuming the presidency as a way out of the country's deepening crisis. Guaido's wife Fabiana Rosales stands next to him, right. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezuelan authorities say 12 officials with the country’s intelligence agency will be tried for their role in the brief detention of an opposition leader whose confinement sparked international outrage as he ramps up pressure on President Nicolas Maduro.

Authorities announced Wednesday that a court in Venezuela’s capital has decided to keep the agents with the feared SEBIN intelligence police under arrest as they await trial on charges that include “illegitimate detention” and “abuse of functions.”

National Assembly president Juan Guaido was forced out a vehicle on his way to an anti-government rally Sunday and released within an hour.

Guaido has catapulted himself into the limelight after becoming the leader of the only branch of government controlled by the opposition. The assembly passed a resolution Tuesday accusing Maduro of “usurping” power.

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