The Venezuelan government believe a man responsible for writing crossword puzzles for popular newspaper Últimas Noticias coded a call for the assassination of president Hugo Chavez' brother Adan, who is the governor of the state of Barinas, within the clues.
It may sound like something out of a John Le Carré novel, but state officials have accused longtime puzzle writer Neptali Segovia of using specific wording that reference the killing of the ailing Head of State's brother. Specifically, the use of the Spanish-language words Adan (Chavez' brother), rafaga (which can mean a burst of gunfire or a swift wind) and the term asesinen (which is the plural of the imperative verb to kill).
The accusation against Segovia was made earlier this week by television pundit and staunch Chavez supporter Miguel Angel Perez Pirela, who presents a news program on the state-controlled network VTV. Pirela claimed a team of psychologists and mathematicians had concluded that the crossword indeed contained a coded assassination plot against Chavez's brother Adan, who is viewed by many as a possible successor to his brother should he no longer be able to fulfill his duties as president.
Chavez returned home to Venezuela on Friday, after having gone to Cuba to continue with radiation treatment for an undisclosed type of cancer.