US judge rejects $100M investors’ lawsuit against Venezuela

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A federal judge has rejected a $100 million investors’ lawsuit against Venezuela in a case that included allegations of fraud, hints of an international criminal conspiracy and references to diamonds, junk bonds and a mysterious house fire in Switzerland.

At issue were 3-decade-old promissory notes issued by a now-defunct government-sponsored Venezuelan bank.

Skye Ventures in Columbus, Ohio, where the purchase of the notes happened, says Venezuela confirmed the debts were the government’s obligations and must be paid.

Lawyers representing Venezuela say the notes were fakes with forged signatures and were never guaranteed by the government.

Judge Edmund Sargus on Friday ruled in favor of Venezuela, calling the notes fraudulent.

The case went to trial this year after Skye Ventures’ 2004 lawsuit survived multiple legal challenges.