CARACAS, Venezuela, April 26 (UPI) -- American filmmaker Timothy Tracy, who went to Venezuela to shoot a film about the country's political divide, was arrested and accused of instigating unrest.
President Nicolas Maduro made the accusation in a speech Thursday, The Washington Post reported.
Maduro accused Tracy of being involved with violent groups.
"I gave the order that he be detained immediately and passed over to the attorney general's office," Maduro said.
Interior Minister Miguel Rodriguez said the government has Tracy's videos and they show he had a close relationship with the extreme right, the Post reported.
Tracy's friends in the United States told the Post he was being used as a scapegoat.
"He was interested in the story of Venezuela and interested in showing both sides of the story," Jesse Herman said. "The whole thing is ridiculous. It's almost comical, the way he's being portrayed."
Herman described Tracy as " an aspiring filmmaker [who] has been involved in film and television production in LA."