- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 15, 2014

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) - President Nicolas Maduro charged on Wednesday that a Colombian paramilitary group collaborated in the killing of a pro-government Venezuelan congressman earlier this month.

Maduro presented surveillance video and what appeared to be a taped confession during a news conference called to discuss the stabbing death of 27-year-old lawmaker Robert Serra and a woman who was at his home.

The president alleged a Colombian paramilitary group conspired with the socialist legislator’s bodyguards for three months to commit the murder with the aim of destabilizing Venezuela. He said two of six perpetrators had been arrested, including Serra’s head of security, and suggested the other four may have fled the country after “sowing violence.”

Maduro previously accused former Colombian President Alvaro Uribe of participating in the plot. On Wednesday, he said Uribe maintains links to groups working against Venezuela. He has presented no evidence for either claim.

Serra, a lawyer by training, was elected to Congress in 2010 after gaining prominence organizing young people to counter a wave of destabilizing student protests in 2007.

“Rest assured that we will get to the masterminds of Serra’s murder inside or outside the country,” Maduro said.

He said he will ask for the help of U.S. authorities in identifying and arresting extreme rightist groups in Miami and other cities that he said are trying to carry out attacks against Venezuela’s socialist administration.

Maduro also said that days after Serra was slain, there were separate attempts to kill the president of Congress and the minister of education. He did not give any details or provide any evidence.

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