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BREAKING: Two men charged with assaulting Capitol Police officer Sicknick

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BREAKING STORY

Two men have been charged with assaulting late Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick with a chemical spray on January 6 during the attack on the U.S. Capitol, according to arrest warrants unsealed on Monday.

On Sunday, 32-year-old Julian Elie Khater of Pennsylvania and 39-year-old George Pierre Tanios of Morgantown, West Virginia were arrested, with the pair expected to appear in court on Monday, The Washington Post was first to report. The two were identified through video footage and other means spraying Sicknick outside the Capitol Building the day of the riot, the court documents say.

It should be noted that the suspects have not been charged with homicide. At this point, prosecutors have not directly implicated anybody in bringing about Sicknick’s death, since no official cause of death has been declared yet, which has drawn inquiry from lawmakers about what occurred.

MORE ON BRIAN SICKNICK: Wray can’t confirm cause of Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick’s death

MORE ON BRIAN SICKNICK: Mother of late Capitol Police Officer Sicknick says she doesn’t believe her son was hit with fire extinguisher

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.

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Biden frees Venezuelan President Maduro’s drug dealing relatives in prisoner swap

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President Biden freed two of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro’s relatives Saturday in exchange for seven jailed Americans. The two nephews of Maduro’s wife Cilia Flores, had been convicted in the United States for drug dealing and sentenced to 18 years in prison, according to the BBC.

According to the report, the swap was in exchange for five American oil executives. Those Americans were “exchanged for two of Mr Maduro’s wife’s nephews, who were serving 18-year sentences in the US on drug charges,” the officials told the BBC. Maduro’s nephews were convicted under the Trump administration and the Venezuelan government claims that they were “unjustly” jailed in the United States.

In a statement from the White House Saturday, Biden said the American’s were  “wrongfully detained.”  He said the American’s  would soon be reunited with their relatives, according to reports.

“Today, we celebrate that seven families will be whole once more. To all the families who are still suffering and separated from their loved ones who are wrongfully detained – know that we remain dedicated to securing their release,” the Biden statement added.

Meanwhile, 13 Republican members of Congress sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, requesting more information on “the intelligence report” that alleges Maduro is emptying his prisons and allowing them to head to the United States in the caravans that crossing the porous border.

The letter states that the report warns Border Patrol agents to be on the look-out for “violent criminals from Venezuela among the migrant caravans heading towards the U.S.-Mexico border.”

“It has been widely reported that the Venezuelan regime, under the control of Nicolás Maduro Moros, is deliberately releasing violent prisoners early, including inmates convicted of ‘murder, rape, and extortion,’ and pushing them to join caravans heading to the United States,” the letter states.

You can follow Sara A. Carter on Twitter @SaraCarterDC.

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