UK & World News
Probe: Was Death Plot Hidden In Crossword?
The author of a newspaper crossword has been questioned by Venezuelan intelligence agents after claims the brainteaser may have contained a hidden message to kill the president's elder's brother.
The allegation was made by state TV presenter Miguel Perez Pirela, who pointed out that Wednesday's puzzle contained the word "ASESINEN," or kill, intersecting with the name of Hugo Chavez's brother, "ADAN".
He also pointed out they were below the word "RAFAGAS," meaning either gusts of wind or bursts of gunfire.
The author, English teacher Neptali Segovia, who has set crossword puzzles for the newspaper Ultimas Noticias for 17 years, said it was nonsense to think there was a hidden code.
He told the publication he went voluntarily to be questioned after intelligence agents turned up at the paper asking about him.
Mr Segovia said: "I went because I'm the first one interested in having all this cleared up. I have nothing to hide."
President Chavez, who has been undergoing cancer treatment, is running for re-election in October against state governor Henrique Capriles.
And the left-wing leader has repeatedly warned his opponents could try to provoke violence or destabilise the country if defeated.
Mr Chavez, who survived a brief coup in 2002, has previously made repeated claims during his 13-year presidency that his adversaries aim to overthrow him or even kill him.