WEST HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA.com) — Congressman Adam Schiff is calling on the Venezuelan government to release one of his West Hollywood constituents who was arrested while working on a documentary film.

“Venezuela’s arrest of Tim Tracy, a documentary film-maker on trumped up charges is an unsettling indication that Hugo Chavez’ intolerance of press freedom has survived his death.  The charge, reportedly personally approved by President Nicolas Maduro, that Mr. Tracy is  ‘creating violence in the cities of this country,’ is ludicrous on its face,” Schiff said in a statement released Sunday.

“The Venezuelan government should release Mr. Tracy immediately and allow him to leave the country without further hindrance,” the Democratic lawmaker continued.

According to The New York Times, Tracy was working on a film that would portray the country’s political divide but had no desire to take sides.

The newspaper claims Tracy, equipped with a limited understanding of Spanish, knew little about Venezuela and its politics.

Tracy apparently told a Times reporter that President Hugo Chavez’s death had left some people with stronger anti-American sentiments, for fear the U.S. would use the opportunity to try to destabilize the country.

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