Journalist Detained in Venezuela Returns to U.S.

Miami Herald reporter Jim Wyss arrives in the U.S. after being held for 48 hours

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An American journalist who was detained for 48 hours by Venezuelan authorities returned safely to the U.S. and was met by his girlfriend at the Miami International Airport on Sunday.

The Miami Herald‘s Andean bureau chief Jim Wyss, 42, was taken into custody by members of the National Guard in San Cristóbal, Táchira, while reporting on the nation’s upcoming political elections, contraband and the economy, the Miami Herald reports.

Wyss, who is based in Bogota, Colombia, was apprehended near the Colombian border and flown to a detention center in Caracas on Friday. Authorities said the journalist was detained because he didn’t have permission to report in the country. Wyss was released to U.S. embassy officials on Saturday.

Wyss’s girlfriend, actress Ana Soler, who is also based in Colombia, happened to be visiting family in Florida when he arrived on Sunday.

“First of all, I want to thank everyone who helped in my release,” he said at the airport. “Aside from being detained, authorities were professional. I was never verbally or physically threatened.”

The seasoned journalist has reported on Venezuela for several years and said he hopes to return soon to cover the country’s elections.

[Miami Herald]