Venezuela crisis: How Maduro 'spent THOUSANDS of state funds on Cuban rituals'

Hugo Carvajal, former director of the country’s military intelligence, lashed out at Mr Maduro in an open letter. Responding to a claim from the Venezuelan ruler that he was dismissed for gross misconduct, Mr Carvajal made several explosive claims about the President’s religious beliefs and financial conduct. A staunch ally of former President Hugo Chavez, the same reverence was certainly not applied to the new leader of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela.

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He wrote: "The people should also know that your religious sacrifice rituals in Cuba were paid by your minister of finance, who on at least one occasion sent a briefcase with $500,000 in cash to Havana in a PDVSA plane."

Mr Maduro was accused of performing Santeria rituals in Cuba while leaving ordinary citizens with desperate shortages back in Venezuela.

Santeria is a popular Cuban religion – literally meaning the “worship of saints” – that combines Roman Catholicism with elements of the Yoruba tradition.

Nicolas Maduro was accused of participating in Santiero rituals in CubaNicolas Maduro was accused of participating in Santiero rituals in Cuba (Image: GETTY)

Venezuela have enjoyed warm relations with Cuba in the pastVenezuela have enjoyed warm relations with Cuba in the past

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