Family of LA lawyer jailed in Venezuela host vigil in hopes of shining new light on case

LOS ANGELES (KABC) — Supporters and family members of a Los Angeles lawyer who is being detained in Venezuela are making sure his case isn’t forgotten and continue to call on the Biden Administration to intervene.

During a rally at the UCLA School of Law on Wednesday, people who know Eyvin Hernandez as a colleague, a former classmate and a friend filled the courtyard to show their support.

According to his family, Hernandez was on vacation in Colombia with a friend and accompanied her to the Venezuelan border so she could have her passport stamped.

Hernandez was accused of conspiracy and criminal association. His family firmly denies all accusations and an investigation that was supposed to last 45 days has taken almost a year.

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When ABC7 spoke with Hernandez in September 2022, he was in a maximum security cell for political prisoners at the Directorate General of Military Counterintelligance, or DGCIM, building.

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“There are no windows, there’s no nothing,” he said at the time. “I mean, we’re basically in a garage being held in a cell, a cage.”

On Wednesday, his brother, Henry Martinez, told Eyewitness News the two can talk about twice a week for 5 to 10 minutes at a time.

“He lost a lot of weight, he told me his pants are falling off,” said Martinez. “The light is on 24 hours so he’s not getting adequate sleep. It’s a roller coaster, you know? His designation of wrongful detention took about six months.”

That designation typically opens up more resources. Henry said a federal official traveled to Venezuela for a welfare check and last month, L.A. Mayor Karen Bass and congressional representatives sent a letter to President Joe Biden, asking he secure Hernandez’s safe return.

However, there hasn’t been an update yet on when, or whether, that’ll happen.

“It’s been very tough for all of us,” said Martinez.

When asked how he and his family are pulling through, he said, “The support. The support from everybody here. People who I have never met.”

As of Wednesday afternoon, more than 5,000 people had signed a Change.org petition calling for Hernandez’s relase. Hernandez’s plight is also described on the website bringeyvinhome.org.

His family has also started a GoFundMe to help bring awareness to Hernandez’s case.

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