Here is information on the careers of former Green Berets involved in the Venezuela raid debacle.
The service records arrive the same day that Venezuelan state television aired spliced clips of an interrogation of one of the two former Green Berets who, according to Venezuelan authorities, was captured along with around 60 people of their force. irregular Venezuelan.
Former green beret turned private security consultant Jordan Goudreau said in a video to announce the raid on Sunday that he helped orchestrate the operation. He then identified his two colleagues as US Special Forces veterans in a now-deleted tweet. He did not respond to a request for comment filed at his office on Wednesday.
The former sergeant. 1st class Goudreau, 43, served on active duty as a special forces medical sergeant and indirect fire infantryman from 2001 to 2016. A LinkedIn account associated with Goudreau stated that he had previously served in the Canadian Armed Forces for three years at mid-1990s.
As a member of the US service, he was deployed to Iraq from November 2006 to April 2007 and from March 2010 to September 2010. He was then deployed to Afghanistan from May 2011 to June 2011 and again from January 2014 to June 2014 .
Goudreau received three Bronze Star medals, the Ranger tab, the Special Forces tab, the combat infantry badge and the parachutist badge.
The former sergeant. Airan Bay, 41, served on active duty as a special forces engineer sergeant from 1996 to 2013. He was deployed to Iraq from March 2003 to June 2003; November 2004 to June 2005; and February 2007 to March 2007.
Berry was awarded two Bronze Star medals, Kosovo Campaign Medal, Ranger Tab, Special Forces Tab, Combat Infantry Badge, Expert Infantry Badge, Badge Parachutist, Special Operations Diver and Special Operations Dive Supervisor badges.
Former Master Sgt. Luc Denman, 34, served on active duty as a Special Forces Communications Sergeant from 2006 to 2011, later serving in the Army Reserve until September 2014. He was deployed to Iraq from March 2010 to September 2010.
Denman was awarded the Army Medal of Honor, Special Forces Tab, Combat Infantry Badge, and Parachutist Badge.
The documents filed for Goudreau’s security consultancy, Silvercorp USA Inc., date from February 2018 with the company’s primary address in Melbourne, Florida. The documents also identify Goudreau as CEO and Drew White as COO. White is a former friend in the military who reportedly broke up with Goudreau last fall. White’s service records were not available on Wednesday, military officials said.
The Associated Press reported on Wednesday that U.S. officials are in the early stages of a federal investigation on the possibility that Goudreau violated the rules of arms trafficking. Citing unnamed officials, the AP reported that the investigation stems from the seizure by Colombian police on March 23 of a stockpile of weapons transported in a truck.
In the much edited Venezuelan State Media Video released Wednesday, a man in custody identified as Denman said he first met Goudreau while posted to Germany in 2009, and started working for Silvercorp earlier this year. He said his job was to provide mission planning and training to rebels in camps in Colombia, work for which he expected to be paid between $ 50,000 and $ 100,000.
Denman went on to tell the interrogator that he and the other Green Beret were ordered to take control of an airport in Caracas so that a plane could take Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro out of the country after his capture. . A local media A report from Denman’s hometown of Austin, Texas said he received training as an airplane pilot between 2012 and 2014 at Texas State Technical College.
“I was helping Venezuelans take back control of their country,” Denman said in the video.
Recorded and edited confessions like this could be made under duress. When questioned by the questioner, Denman said President Donald Trump was in command of Goudreau, although he made an exaggerated eye movement in the process.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo echoed the denials of involvement by Trump and Defense Secretary Mark Esper the day before on Wednesday.
“If we had been involved it would have turned out differently,” Pompeo said. “As to who funded it, we’re not ready to share more information on what we know happened. We will unpack this at the appropriate time.
During Denman’s questioning, the veteran implicated US-backed Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó as the plot’s first co-conspirator. Goudreau also released a contract showing what appears to be Guaidó’s signing on an 8-page deal for nondescript “general services”. But Goudreau noted that Guaidó never made any payment for the deal.
For his part, Guaidó has denied any involvement in Goudreau’s plot.
“Nicolas Maduro, you are responsible. They knew about the operation, they infiltrated them and waited for them to slaughter them, ”Guaidó said on Tuesday.
About eight fighters were reportedly killed in Sunday’s clashes. It is unclear what led Goudreau to believe the ill-fated plot would succeed.
“You have to introduce a catalyst,” Goudreau told The Associated Press in a telephone interview Monday. “I’m not saying by any means that 60 guys can come in and overthrow a diet. I’m saying 60 guys can come in and inspire the army and the police to turn around and join in liberating their country, which is basically what they want.
Goudreau announced the foray as a “strike force” on Twitter on Sunday while tagging Trump’s own Twitter account. His company’s social media pages have since been taken down.
Five US citizens who were arrested during a Citgo business meeting by Maduro’s forces in November 2017 are also still being held in the country. Due to the diplomatic feud between the two countries, there is no US embassy operating in the Venezuelan capital of Caracas that could immediately help detained US veterans.
All consular services were suspended in March 2019 as crime, civil unrest, and Venezuela’s economic outlook declined significantly. according to at the State Department.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Kyle Rempfer is an editor and journalist whose investigations have focused on combat operations, criminal cases, foreign military assistance and training accidents. Prior to entering journalism, Kyle served in the US Air Force Special Tactics and was deployed in 2014 to Paktika Province, Afghanistan, and Baghdad, Iraq.