June 19, 2019 / 12:38 PM / 6 months ago

U.S. seeks info from ad-hoc Citgo board named by Venezuela's Guaido

CARACAS, June 19 (Reuters) - An ad-hoc board of directors for U.S. oil refiner Citgo, named by Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido, said on Wednesday it has received a request for information from U.S. officials, who are probing its parent company PDVSA for alleged corruption.

The board was named by Guaido, also the leader of Venezuela’s opposition-controlled National Assembly, earlier this year in part to protect overseas assets belonging to PDVSA, Venezuela’s state oil company.

“Recently, the U.S. Department of Justice ... has also requested information from Citgo,” the board said on its Twitter account. “Citgo has communicated to the Department of Justice its complete disposition to cooperate to clear up presumed irregular actions or corruption.”

The Citgo board added that it was conducting an internal investigation into “the company’s actions in the recent past.”

Guaido in January invoked Venezuela’s constitution to assume an interim presidency, arguing socialist President Nicolas Maduro’s 2018 re-election was illegitimate. He has been recognized as the country’s rightful leader by dozens of countries, including the United States.

Maduro has called Guaido a U.S.-backed puppet seeking to oust him in a coup. He retains control of Venezuela’s state functions, including the armed forces and the day-to-day activities of PDVSA within the country. (Reporting by Luc Cohen; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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