Foley Foundation Celebrates Detainee Releases in Venezuela

WASHINGTON — The James W. Foley Legacy Foundation today welcomed the White House announcement that 10 Americans who have been held in Venezuela will be returned home as part of an apparent prisoner exchange.

“We highly commend the Biden administration for their moral courage in negotiating to gain the release of these unjustly held Americans,” said Foley Foundation President and Founder Diane Foley.

The Biden administration released Alex Saab, an ally of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro who was arrested in 2020 by the U.S. for money laundering, in exchange for the release of Americans including Airan Berry and Luke Denman, who have been held by Venezuela since 2020; Jerrel Kenemore, Eyvin Hernandez, Joseph Cristella, held since 2022, and Savoi Jadon Wright, who was detained earlier this year.

“All of the families of the men held in Venezuela were tireless advocates on their behalf. Five families were part of the Bring Our Families Home Campaign,” Foley said. “We are proud fiscal sponsors of the Campaign, a family-led effort to advocate for the return of their loved ones from unjust captivity abroad. We applaud their courage, and celebrate as the families of those returning from Venezuela are reunited with their loved ones during this holiday season.”

“Even as we celebrate these releases, we are mindful that more Americans are still held captive around the world,” Foley said. “Government engagement must be sustained to ensure all Americans wrongfully detained come home.”