Pérez Rodríguez, Carlos Andrés

Pérez Rodríguez, Carlos Andrés kärˈlōs ändrāsˈ pāˈrās rôdrēˈgās [key], 1922–2010, president of Venezuela (1974–78, 1989–93). An aide to President Rómulo Betancourt, he was secretary of the interior in Betancourt's second administration (1959–64). He became secretary of the Democratic Action party in 1967. Elected president in Dec., 1973, he instituted a sweeping economic policy, aimed at the nationalization of the oil and iron and steel industries and eventual Venezuelan control of other foreign enterprises. Coming after the economic crisis that shook Venezuela in the 1980s, his second term in office was marked by stringent austerity measures. During his second presidency, in 1992, there were two coup attempts, and Pérez was suspended from office in Dec., 1993, following charges of misappropriating government funds. He was placed under house arrest the following year and was convicted in May, 1996; sentenced to house arrest, he was released in Sept., 1996, for time served since 1994. In 1998 he was again charged with corruption, but his subsequent election to the senate gave him immunity. When the senate was abolished and the case against Pérez was reopened in 1999, he went into exile, first in the Dominican Republic and later in the United States.

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